Ex Ministers Under Fire Over Casino Money Laundering

The announcement that a Cullen Commission of Inquiry is conducting an investigation into the British Columbia Lottery Corporation (BCLC) has stunned the gaming community in the province of British Columbia. The organization, along with its ministers, has been under pressure as a result of suspicions of money laundering that have been brought to light at casinos located all around the province.

Investigators who are working on this case have conducted cross-examinations of former lawmakers as part of their investigation into their alleged negligence about the problem of money laundering. According to the allegations revealed in this investigation, the government has allegedly made a point of giving gaming money top priority while simultaneously ignoring any and all indicators that indicate to illegal behavior.


The Beginning of a Thorough Investigation

In response to significant reports of illegal funds being used to fuel the real estate, luxury automobile, and casino industries across the entirety of British Columbia, the Cullen Commission was established in 2019 and given its official start date. The panel held its first round of public hearings in February of 2020, and the submission deadline for the final report has been set for the middle of December of this year.


Attorney General David Eby of British Columbia is responsible for the commissioning of an impartial study. It was discovered that the operators and regulators of the province appeared to have ignored the enormous cash transactions that were taking place all around the province. For instance, it is thought that the River Rock Casino, which is the largest casino in British Columbia, did not properly report suspicious transactions. During the month of December in 2014, one customer made a cash payment totaling 1.8 million Canadian dollars in just one week.


Accusations Have Been Described As Offensive

When appearing with the inquiry on Friday, Mike de Jong, who had previously served as the Finance Manager of BC, referred to these claims as being offensive. According to him, there have been a number of commendable efforts done across the province in the direction of better comprehending the problem facing British Columbia.


Rich Coleman, a former member of the provincial cabinet who was in charge of finance, has also denied the charges. During his time in office, he claims he never once seen someone wash their hands of allegations of money laundering, as he stated in his statement to the Cullen Commission. On Wednesday, his testimony was presented for a total of five hours. During this time, he testified before the commission that he had never made the prevention of money laundering a top priority during his time in government since there had been far more important matters to address.


Coleman further clarified that there was never a time when the government willfully disregarded any warnings on possible instances of money laundering. He is adamant that the incident did not take place and justified his choice to dismantle an anti-illegal casino squad in 2009. After that, he came to the conclusion that the one million Canadian dollars in designated funds should be given to some other deserving organization instead.

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