Sunday, May 11, 2008

 

How B.C. became a world crime superpower

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Special thanks to a commentor who suggested: Mary, log onto Macleans magazine and find the article "How BC became a world crime superpower".

I did. It's not happy reading but I read it all. I hope you do too. An excerpt:


" ... examine the fuzzy line between B.C.'s criminal and legitimate economies. One car dealer in Vancouver told the National Post a few years ago that a quarter of his business involved selling luxury cars for cash to those involved in the drug trade. That helps explain the absurd number of Maseratis, Mercedes and Hummers that roam the streets.

It's estimated that more people are employed in the marijuana industry than in traditional sectors like forestry. Is it any wonder the trade in illicit goods seems to show up in the economic statistics?

B.C. is the only province to have posted a negative, and falling, personal saving rate for 10 years running. One bank economist suggests this reflects the growing size of B.C.'s black market, which doesn't get captured in the data.

Likewise, a 2005 RCMP report found that if marijuana production was factored into provincial accounts, B.C.'s trade surplus would jump 230 per cent to $8.6 billion.

"The general public is completely ignorant of the extent to which organized crime has infiltrated B.C. communities and the business environment," says Michael Chettleburgh, author of Young Thugs, a book examining gang violence in Canada.

Even the booming real estate market — B.C.'s favourite fixation — has been caught up in criminal schemes. In the E-Paragon bust police seized nine multi-million-dollar homes allegedly bought with the proceeds of crime. Ye himself lived on a lovely riverfront street lined with cherry blossoms and fastidiously trimmed lawns.

According to police, even young and unsophisticated street gangs have been caught sinking cold hard cash into properties as a way to launder money and generate seemingly easy returns. "You really have to look at the price of real estate in the Lower Mainland and ask 'Who is buying?' " says Supt. John Robin with the B.C. integrated gang task force ...


An especially alarming line in the Maclean's article says that people in B.C. have no idea of the implications of the "Pacific Gateway" concept ...

Read the article. We can't fix a problem if we don't know what it is.

- BC Mary.


Full story: How B.C. became a world crime superpower
http://www.macleans.ca/canada/national/article.jsp?content=20080507_26032_26032

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See also:

Realtors help combat organized crime and terrorism
Vancouver Sun - May 15, 2008

http://www.canada.com/vancouversun/news/story.html?id=c84c1a57-b211-42dd-8910-f08b7ac3335b

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Comments:
Oops. Macleans.ca is all that is needed.
 
Does the fact that Canadian officials are in Columbia today hammering out a "Free Trade Agreement" fit in here somewhere?

Let's see we are the Bud Masters, Columbia can control the white powder (cocaine) and we have covered the prime producer of Heroin, Afghanistan. We didn't bother with any trade agreements with Afghanistan, we just went with our American buds and did it the old way - through colonial occupation.
 
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