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BC's Attorney General going to Ottawa to talk to MPs about money laundering

Last Updated Mar 21, 2018 at 12:12 pm PST

FILE - BC Attorney General David Eby speaks to reporters on January 29, 2018. (Marcella Bernardo, NEWS 1130 Photo)

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – In recent months, you’ve heard the stories of gamblers entering local casinos with bags full of laundered cash. The province promises to address the issue, which it claims the previous government ignored.

Now, BC’s attorney general plans to head to Ottawa to ask for more support as that politician ramps up his crackdown on dirty money.

Given how complex this issue is and the multiple jurisdictions involved, Attorney General David Eby sees real value in talking to the federal finance committee, as it looks at changes to laws around money laundering and terrorist financing.

He plans to outline the challenges here in BC before the federal Finance Committee.

“The issues that we’re grappling with around real estate and casinos, and the seriousness of the impact that gang violence has when these gangs are able to launder money,” he outlines.

“The federal government has a huge role to play in supporting British Columbia in our fight against money laundering. The role really includes key actors like Fintrac, which is the anti-money laundering agency that receives all the reports from casinos, realtors, [and] notaries,” says Eby.

He believes drug dealers and other criminals have been spending millions of dollars in illegally gained cash at local casinos and then getting clean bills back in return. He has said the issue is so prevalent here, experts call it “the Vancouver Model.”

He’s pushing for more support and coordination to clamp down on money laundering. He also wants more public accountability.

“Externally, the public in British Columbia did not know. And that gap led to a lack of accountability and a lack of resources for anti-money laundering controls.”

Later this month, the province expects to receive an independent review of anti-money laundering policies and practices at BC casinos.