Letter: Calling for a public inquiry

Open letter to the Hon. David Eby, Q.C., Attorney General of British Columbia:

We are writing regarding the recent police reports which have been made public, indicating that international drug traffickers are purportedly responsible for laundering billions of dollars each year through the real estate market in the Lower Mainland.

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Specifically, the money is obtained through the sale of fentanyl — an incredibly hazardous substance that is responsible for a minimum of 4,000 opioid-related deaths in Canada last year alone, according to figures reported by Health Canada. The vast majority of these deaths involve a fentanyl overdose.

A little research reveals the telltale signs of extensive profiteering and illicit nefarious actions in the area.

For example, Statistics Canada reported the median income to house price ratio in much of British Columbia is in excess of 1:15.

Moreover, large developers have readily admitted that most of their clientele comes from overseas investors who allow their homes and buildings to sit empty for investment-exclusive purposes.

Perhaps most disturbingly, highly lucrative developers have reputedly donated outrageous sums of money to political campaigns.

As a consequence, everyday British Columbians suffer, either directly or indirectly.

For example, property prices have skyrocketed, leaving many locals with no option except to relocate.

Therefore:

We, the undersigned, respectfully request that the B.C. government support a public inquiry and create a commission to investigate and prosecute those allegedly involved in drug trafficking, money laundering, and profiteering in B.C.’s real estate economy.

Moreover, we are requesting that the B.C. government take at least three specific actions:

Firstly, the government must conduct a public inquiry for the express purpose of identifying the international money launderers who have used the Lower Mainland real estate market to launder their ill-gotten gains, identify the elected officials who either directly or indirectly played a role in these illegal and harmful activities, and pinpoint the special interest groups that participated in these actions.

Secondly, a special task force must be developed to stop money laundering in the region.

Thirdly, the assets of persons who engaged in the money laundering activities should be seized and used to help those impacted by the opioid crisis and to build affordable housing.

In closing, allow us to express our gratitude for taking the time to read our petition and consider its content.

We are certain you will take the appropriate next steps to ensure that these individuals are held accountable for their actions and to restore the integrity of British Columbia and its real estate market.

Jack Trovato

RICHMOND

Readers can sign the petition on change.org at: Change.org/p/Hon-David-Eby-q-c-Attorney-General-We-Support-a-Public-Inquiry-Into-Money-Laundering-in-British-Columbia-s-Economy

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