Large cash purchases, ‘lifestyle audits’ to fight money laundering gain support in B.C.

Large cash purchases, ‘lifestyle audits’ to fight money laundering gain support in B.C.

Angus Reid Institute found that a majority of Canadians support anti-money laundering initiatives

It appears that Canadians in every region of the country believe money laundering is a major problem in their province, according to a new survey, but many are indecisive on just how much action should be taken.

Sixty per cent of the 1,500 polled in an Angus Reid Institute survey, released Tuesday, said they support a nationwide ban on cash purchases over $10,000. Among B.C. respondents, 75 per cent supported the initiative.

Fifty-five per cent said they support lifestyle audits, where governments investigate individuals who “seem to be living far beyond their means: based on their income level and purchases. In B.C., that support increases to 62 per cent.

ALSO READ: RCMP says its stretched thin on B.C. money laundering

Revelations that an RCMP official charged with breaching a Canadian official secrets law was overseeing a Russian money-laundering probe are refocusing national attention on Canada’s role in international money laundering networks.

In B.C., an expert panel estimated in May that the amount of money laundered through the Canadian economy may approach $50 billion, with some experts suggesting that number is conservative.

Since the inquiry some recommendations have been put into action, including universities banning tuition payed fully in cash. The City of Vancouver also no longer accepts any types of cash payments above $10,000.

READ MORE: B.C. estimates $7 billion laundered in 2018, $5 billion in real estate

More than 70 per cent of residents outside of B.C. say their own province should also complete an inquiry of its own.

The federal election campaign has not yet put a focus on anti-money laundering initiatives, but the survey shows a considerable appetite for whichever party is elected in October to pursue the matter more.

The 2019 federal budget proposed several anti-money laundering initiatives, with investments of approximately $200 million over five years as well as additional funding. However, nearly half of those surveyed said they’re dissatisfied with federal government efforts.

One initiative, to get rid of the $50 and $100 bill, remains firmed opposed, despite some experts suggesting that discontinuing large bills would hamper money laundering operations. In B.C., 15 per cent of respondents said the $100 bill should be discontinued, while four per cent supported nixing the $50 bill.


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

The new emergency department at Abbotsford Regional Hospital and Conference Centre is slated to open June 8. (Screenshot from Province of BC video)
Expanded emergency department slated to open in June at Abbotsford Regional Hospital

Project cost $15 million with an additional $1.25 million donated for equipment

Abbotsford Christian Middle & Secondary School closed until May 25 after 10-day exposure. (File photo)
Entire population of Abbotsford Christian Middle & Secondary recommended for testing after COVID cluster

Several staff and students affected after continuous 10-day exposure; campuses closed until May 25

The Reach Gallery Museum is one of three Abbotsford arts and culture organizations to receive Pivot Program grants through the provincial government. (Abbotsford News file photo)
Three Abbotsford arts organizations receive $70K in B.C. grants

Funding awarded through provincial government’s Pivot Program

Jonathan Prest had to climb way up to the top of a dead red cedar tree to rescue a terrified cat, but he made it up and down successfully. (Facebook photos)
Rosedale tree cutter rescues cat stuck 100 feet up a dead and dried-out cedar

Jonathan Prest put himself in extreme peril to get a terrified cat out of a dangerous situation

A lumber planer has been installed at the former Metric Modular site as PowerWood works on moving from Surrey to Agassiz. Established in 1995, the red cedar product manufacturer will have plenty of room to grow in Agassiz, said co-owner Jake Power. (Adam Louis/Observer)
Surrey cedar processor PowerWood moving to Agassiz

The company ships red cedar projects all over the world

Prince Rupert was one of the first B.C. communities targeted for mass vaccination after a steep rise in infections. Grey area marks community-wide vaccine distribution. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. tracks big drop in COVID-19 infections after vaccination

Prince Rupert, Indigenous communities show improvement

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam listens to a question during a news conference, in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Restrictions will lift once 75% of Canadians get 1 shot and 20% are fully immunized, feds say

Federal health officials are laying out their vision of what life could look like after most Canadians are vaccinated against COVID-19

Mike Farnworth, pre-pandemic. (File photo)
Surrey Police recruitment not distracting cops from shootings, Farnworth says

‘That’s simply not the case,’ Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth told the Now-Leader on Friday

Police are at Ecole Mount Prevost Elementary but the students have been evacuated. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)
Gardener finds buried explosives, sparking evacuation of Cowichan school

Students removed from school in an ‘abundance of caution’

RCMP officers stand near a body covered with a tarp in the parking lot of a shopping complex after one person was killed and two others were injured during a shooting in Burnaby, B.C., on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Man, 23, killed in latest Lower Mainland shooting had gang ties: IHIT

Jaskeert Kalkat was one of the three people hit by gunfire at Market Crossing mall at around 8:30 p.m.

A COVID-19 patient receives oxygen outside a hospital in Jammu, India, Wednesday, May 12, 2021. (AP/Channi Anand)
B.C. donates $500K to Red Cross COVID-19 relief efforts in India

The money will provide oxygen cylinders and ambulances for patients in communities grappling with the virus

Superintendent Aaron Paradis, community services officer with the Surrey RCMP, during a media availability about a recent drug bust in Port Coquitlam. (Photo: Lauren Collins)
Police seize 13 million ‘potentially fatal doses’ of pure fentanyl at B.C. drug lab

The evidence was seized at large, illicit drug manufacturing site in Port Coquitlam

Police are asking the public for help identifying a suspect who allegedly hurled anti-Asian slurs at a family in a Richmond drive-through on May 1. (Benjamin Wong/Screen grab)
Suspect at large in racist tirade at Richmond drive-thru, says RCMP

The Caucasian man was recorded May 1 yelling anti-Asian slurs at a Richmond family in the lineup

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Most Read