BOSTON (CN) – Testifying Thursday afternoon before the Massachusetts Gaming Commission, the ex-wife of casino mogul Steve Wynn said she was removed from the company’s board after reporting rape allegations against him.
Elaine Wynn’s disclosure came on the third day of a special hearing before the commission to reassess the suitability of Wynn Resorts as a state casino license holder.
The hearings follow the release of a 200-page investigative report about the lengths that company executives allegedly went to cover up sexual misconduct claims against its founder.
Steve Wynn also served as finance chair of the Republican National Committee throughout 2017, until resigning from the RNC as well as Wynn Resorts amid the allegations.
Before she took questions, Elaine Wynn’s attorney Mark Ferrario with Greenberg Traurig read a statement on her behalf.
According to Ferrario, Wynn learned in 2009 that her husband had allegedly raped an employee while she was in the middle of divorcing the casino tycoon.
“In the midst of all this family turmoil, out of the blue she receives an email that alleges her soon-to-be-ex-husband raped an employee earlier,” Ferrario said. “She was devastated.”
According to Wynn, she confronted her then-husband as soon as she heard the claim, but he denied the charges.
“He explained that he was being extorted by this individual. It was not true,” Wynn testified.
Despite the denial, Wynn said that she still went to Wynn Resort attorney Kim Sinatra with the information.
“It was my fiduciary responsibility to notify the general counsel of the company of any incident that would have involved any employee of the company of a serious accusation,” she said.
Wynn continued, “They reported back to me that the matter had been turned over to outside counsel and that a determination had been made that since Mr. Wynn had handled it personally,” the situation was resolved.
Wynn did not disclose to state regulators that she knew of the alleged 2005 rape, because Wynn Resort attorneys had told her that the matter had been settled by her husband and it was no longer a company issue.
Wynn is a co-founder of Wynn Resorts and is currently the largest single shareholder of the company.
Even after Wynn’s divorce was finalized, she continued to serve on the board of directors of Wynn Resorts which eventually resulted in the company souring on her.
“I started to sense that there was a bit of a change of tone and mood of the board, and I do believe that I was starting to be referred to as a bitter cynical ex-wife,” she said. “It culminated, unfortunately, with my removal from the board. It was at that point that I understood there was an interference.”
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission is expected to render a decision on Wynn Resort’s license in the coming weeks.