B.C.’s top lawmaker says the province will bring in new, concrete measures to “close the loopholes” that allow lenders connected to the fentanyl trade to launder money by granting large cash loans and mortgages to Vancouver-area property owners.
Attorney-General David Eby said possible changes include requiring private lenders to provide proof of how the money they are loaning was obtained and provide more information about who they are, before they can register a mortgage or claim against real estate.
“For too long it’s been too easy to do business in B.C. under a cloak of secrecy,” Mr. Eby said. “I can reassure British Columbians we are fully engaged in this issue. We are formulating the policy work to ensure that our responses are as bullet proof as possible.”
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The pledge comes as a result of a Globe and Mail investigation, which revealed how 17 local residents, most associated with drug trafficking, are effectively parking millions of dollars in Vancouver-area real estate. Those private lenders issue mortgages and short-term loans, just as banks do, except in cash, likely derived from drug trafficking and other crimes.