B.C. to go ahead with public inquiry into money laundering

Decision on money laundering inquiry to be announced today

Decision on money laundering inquiry to be announced today

The British Columbia government will hold a public inquiry into money laundering.

"That criminal activity has had a material impact on people: whether it be the rise of opioid addictions, the rise of opioid deaths as a result of overdoses, whether it was the extraordinary increase in housing costs, people were being affected by criminal activity in British Columbia".

The decision comes after a report last week revealed $7.4-billion of dirty money flowed through the province a year ago.

The reports were written by Peter German, a former RCMP deputy commissioner, and law professor Maureen Maloney, the chair of B.C.'s expert panel on money laundering in real estate.

Horgan said a public inquiry will give an understanding of how the problem reached this point and how to eradicate the crime. The commission of inquiry into money laundering will have 18 months to deliver an interim report.

The government appointed B.C. Supreme Court Justice Austin F. Cullen to head the inquiry, which will look into the impacts on real estate, gaming, financial institutions, and the corporate and professional sectors.

Last week's report found a total of $47-billion has been laundered across Canada.

After learning of the reports' conclusions, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said the information was "extremely alarming", adding that money laundering is hurting people by disrupting the housing market. A final report is expected by May 2021.

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