Packer in LA with tube strapped to stomach after casino fallout
BILLIONAIRE James Packer has been snapped out for a stroll in an LA park with his doctor in tow and a medical device apparently strapped to his abdomen - sparking speculation he has undergone weight-loss surgery once again.
The 51-year-old casino mogul was seen a month ago wearing the medical device in Aspen, Colorado, which he now calls home.
But yesterday, a tube could be seen protruding from under his dark blue polo shirt, seemingly attached to the device.
He was snapped walking in the grounds of UCLA with a trainer and his doctor.
"He appeared extremely tired by the end of the walk," a witness said.
The university has a famous Centre for Obesity and Metabolic health, known to specialise in bariatric surgery for those who are undergoing it for a second time. Mr Packer lost 35kg after having lap-band surgery in November 2011, which involved putting a ring around the top part of his stomach.
He began to once again pile on weight after he broke up with diva Mariah Carey in 2016.
Earlier last month, Packer tried to strike a deal with Wynn Resorts to takeover his Crown casino empire for $4.6 billion.
News of the potential Wynn deal saw Crown's share price jump by 20 per cent as 15 million shares worth around $200 million were traded.
The previous day just 830,000 Crown shares were bought and sold. The interest from Wynn bumped the price from $11.70 to $14.05.
But then Wynn Resorts took the deal off the table.
"Following the premature disclosure of preliminary discussions, Wynn Resorts has terminated all discussions with Crown Resorts concerning any transactions," the company said just four hours after confirming the deal.
Crown confirmed that decision at the time: "Crown notes that Wynn has announced that it has terminated all discussions with Crown concerning any transaction."
Crown Resort's shares dropped to close at around $12.80. Economist Steven Daghlian from CommSec said: "That is still up 10 per cent on its closing price on Monday which shows the market has not lost hope that the deal can be revived."
The negotiations came at the end of a horror time for Packer.
In business he took the arrest of 19 Crown staff in China very hard.
It led to a split from his long-term Macau business partner Lawrence Ho and the end of Crown's casino interests there.
He also sold out of Hollywood movie company RatPac and became embroiled in a corruption scandal involving Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Packer was also upset by the acrimonious negotiations with sister Gretel who insisted he buy her out of the company in the wake of his messy split from Carey.