BC government to probe real estate money laundering

Attorney General has reacted to recent media reports

BC government to probe real estate money laundering
Steve Randall

The BC attorney general has vowed to investigate claims that certain individuals are using the province’s real estate for money laundering related to drugs.

David Eby says that the review being undertaken by former RCMP deputy commissioner Peter German into money laundering rules for the casino industry will be extended to include the real estate sector.

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The action follows media reports including a Globe and Mail investigation which allege that individuals involved in selling fentanyl are using real estate for cleaning their dirty cash.

It reported that cash derived from selling drugs and other criminal activity was being used by private lenders offering mortgages and personal loans.

In a statement issued late Friday, David Eby said:

“Recent media reports of money laundering through real estate in British Columbia, including today’s Globe and Mail story, are very serious and deeply troubling. The nature of these allegations, that this money-laundering activity is actively influencing our real estate market and is connected to the sale of life-destroying fentanyl, underlines the critical importance of addressing money laundering urgently and not ignoring it. This story confirms our government’s commitment to taking action to crack down on money laundering and criminal activity in B.C.”

He added that the government will assess the scope of the issue and what needs to be done to appropriately address it.