Saturday, September 30, 2017

What Did The Minster Know And When Did He Know It?


Sam Cooper's pre-Blockbuster money laundering piece for the Postmedia prints began like this:

In October 2015, former B.C. finance minister Mike de Jong wrote to the B.C. Lottery Corp. and warned that for B.C. casinos “large and suspicious transactions remain prevalent,” Postmedia has learned.

At that time, de Jong also directed BCLC board chair Bud Smith to “enhance customer due diligence to mitigate the risk of money laundering” in B.C. casinos, according to information cited in a May 2017 government letter to BCLC CEO Jim Lightbody...

Which, immediately had me wondering...


Or, more specifically, why did a fine longstanding BCL ministerial fellow like Mr. de Jong, a man who hated to write down anything about anything, suddenly up and leave this blazing paper trail behind the 'risk of money laundering' at the most excellent and upstanding gambling establishments that he and his had overseen for almost fifteen years?

Especially given that Rich Coleman had cleared the decks and facilitated the blooming of this type of behaviour (the unchecked potential for money laundering, not the letter writing) way back in 2009 when he, Mr. Coleman, axed the integrated illegal gambling enforcement team.


Mr. Cooper, again in that blockbuster minus one piece, appeared to answer this 'why' question in the very next sentence:

...The direction from de Jong in 2015 came after B.C. casino operators reported about $177 million in suspicious cash entering their casinos in 2014, government documents show...

So all is explained, right?

Except, then I got to thinking....

2014 to October 2015 is a pretty long time for a Minister concerned with whales and massive wads of unexplained cash to write a sternly worded letter that showed up again in another letter from a longstanding BCL government-appointed apparatchik right 'round election time in the spring of 2017.

All of which brings me to Mr. Cooper's main blockbuster piece, published yesterday, in which he revealed a longstanding investigation by the Horsemen into entire schools of whales washing up on our shores with massive wads of unexplained cash that they think just might be linked to the laundering of drug money.

Here is the lede from Mr. Cooper's blockbuster:

On Oct. 15, 2015, a Mountie burst through the front door of an office in Richmond, carrying a battering ram and with a rifle slung on his back. The door swung shut behind him, locking him inside. He was in the lobby of Silver International Investment, a high-end money transfer business, surrounded by bulletproof glass...


October of 2015.


It's almost like the good Minister at the time might have learned about something in the fall of 2015 about what the RCMP was up to that could have set him and his to worrying about how they could reduce the risk that there just might be subsequent accusations of BCL government complicity in whales and wads of (potentially) illegal cash and all that when all this came to light.

As a result, if that were the case, is it possible that sternly worded letter writing that left a paper trail suddenly ensued.

Regardless all these questions, I think any reasonable person who has been paying attention must now be wondering...

Why the heckfire didn't Mr. de Jong get out his pen in 2014 when he was first 'warned' about the whales and the wads of cash by the fine gambling establishments concerned?

Which means we're back to that original question once again.


(along with the what's and the whens and the who's and the where's and all that)

In case you missed it, Laila Yuile has chronicled the consequences of Mr. Coleman's axe work for some time now.
Mr. Cooper's follow-up blockbuster plus one piece is....Here.



Keith. said...

Hey Ross,

From the comments on this subject from one of Sam Coopers excellent articles, re: the difference between a bank and a B.C. casino

"Banks money launder they pay fines in the millions to billions
Casinos money launder they pay zero and have an audited report & law enforcement intelligence red flags shelved

Could this be because Banks are regulated federally while Casinos are provincially. How is this not criminal negligence by our government. Who ordered the shelving of the report and hiding from the opposition and public?"

Hopefully David Eby's recently announced investigation,

can answer these questions, and hold someone to account. Not just another report with the result;

" we have learned from this so it won't happen again" B.S.

Lulymay said...

Methinks the good Mr. Coleman learned a lot more about crime from his career as a guard in BC's prison system than he ever did in his shorter stint as a member of the RCMP.

It also proves (to me, at least) that the good Mr. Coleman was the politician in charge of the BC Lieberals all those years, and not the kindly photo-op queen or the ex employee of a large real estate entity.

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, a herculean task lies ahead to bring the guilty to justice in spite of Mr. Eby's efforts. Many lawyers are about to get rich along with many dawning out legal battles. All the while, those who profited from and were protected from this sordid scheme get to enjoy their mansions and inflated bank accounts. And they say crime doesn't pay. Nonsense. And because Vancouver's housing market has been manipulated and inflated by these crooks, the frustration for the average person is doubled.

North Van's Grumps said...

What was Coleman and De Jong doing in October of 2015 ....????

Natural Gas Week
October 11 to the 17

Other BC Proclamations for 2015 are by the week and two are counted in years.

All of 2015

• ADHD Awareness Month — October 2015
• Community Living Month — October 2015
• Foster Family Month — October 2015
• Library Month — October 2015
• Library Month — October 2015
• Occupational Therapy Month — October 2015
• Registered Disability Savings Plan Awareness Month — October 2015
• Small Business Month — Oct. 1 to 31, 2015
• Breastfeeding Week — Oct. 1 to 7, 2015
• Fire Prevention Week — Oct. 4 to 10, 2015
• National Family Week — Oct. 5 to 11, 2015
• Every Girl Matters Day — Oct. 11, 2015
• Co-op Week — Oct. 11 to 17, 2015
• Healthcare Security and Safety Week — Oct. 11 to 17, 2015
• Homelessness Action Week — Oct. 11 to 17, 2015
• Manufacturing Week — Oct. 11 to 17, 2015
Natural Gas Week — Oct. 11 to 17, 2015
• Veterinary Technologist Week — Oct. 11 to 17, 2015
• Change Day BC — Oct. 15, 2015
• Credit Union Day — Oct. 15, 2015
• Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day — Oct. 15, 2015
• Conflict Resolution Week — Oct. 17 to 24, 2015
• Health Care Assistant Day — Oct. 18, 2015
• Healthy Workplace Week — Oct. 18 to 24, 2015
• National Teen Driver Safety Week — Oct. 19 to 25, 2015
• Registered Massage Therapy Awareness Week — Oct. 19 - 25, 2015
• Waste Reduction Week — Oct. 19 to 25, 2015
• School Library Day — Oct. 26, 2015
• School Library Day — Oct. 28, 2015
• National UNICEF Day — Oct. 31, 2015

Anonymous said...

3x deleting and shredding post it notes?

RossK said...



Not to mention all that 'Mikey doesn't do EMail business'.

Which is why my Spidey sense started tingling the minute I read Mr. Cooper's prequel piece about the 'letter'.


e.a.f. said...

He wrote the letter to Bud Smith, our Bud Smith the former politician? The Bud Smith of Scored days?????

Lew said...

I was looking at the money-laundering graphic in Mr. Cooper’s piece and wondered about the part where criminal organizations wind up with their share in Chinese banks.

Mr. de Jong’s 2015 mandate letter congratulated him for establishing a Renminbi currency trading hub in Vancouver, and mandated him to “Aggressively promote Vancouver as a global Renminbi trading centre by encouraging Asian lending institutions to open offices in Vancouver.” On December 03, 2015 he announced China’s approval for BC to become the first sovereign government to establish a Panda bond program in China’s onshore Renminbi market.

I hope Mr. Eby’s investigation includes determining whether either of these initiatives facilitates the movement, safe stashing, or improved laundering of drug money.

Anonymous said...

c difficile gate
health research gate

RossK said...


Re: the 'Car Phone Scandal' that led to Mr. Smith's resignation from cabinet...Apparently, there was some press gallery involvement with the release of the transcripts to the good Mr. Sihota. I say apparently because we never really got the entire story given that the Club Membership closed ranks as noted by Bob Mackin a few years ago in The Tyee:

"...Then-CKNW reporter Kim Emerson quit the Press Gallery board because Sun reporter Keith Baldrey and the Province columnist Brian Kieran opposed creating a committee to examine the media's conduct in the affair.

Kieran later quit reporting and became a lobbyist with Pilothouse Public Affairs. Kieran and co-workers/Liberal "backroom boys" Erik Bornmann and Jamie Elmhirst were key players in the BC Rail corruption scandal, but not charged..."




Will be interesting, indeed.

The brazen civil litigation actions of one of the main subjects of the Horsemen's investigation certainly does suggest a cloak of 'legitimacy' had been thrown over the Whale enablers.



A whole lotta 'gates' with nary a regulatory fence in sight.


RossK said...


Regarding my comment, above...

...This, from SCooper on the Twittmachine.