Canada’s organized crime laws, which are familiar to any Canadian law firm worth their salt like MyDefence.ca, is in need of change, according to B.C. Attorney General David Eby.
Eby is calling on Public Safety Minister Bill Blair to adopt racketeering laws similar to the ones the US employs, which were credited for helping dismantle New York’s Mafia families. Canadian experts on the transnational gangs operating in Toronto and Vancouver have also thrown their support behind Eby’s call for reforms to federal law.
According to these legal experts, Canada’s organized crime legislation, in its current state, isn’t really able to address actual organized crime, with gang bosses enjoying effective immunity from prosecution, while the country’s judicial system is showing its age and is being overpowered by the sophisticated transnational cartels.
According to Fintrac, Canada’s anti-money laundering watchdog, the transnational crime scheme in the country use underground banks in Vancouver and China to provide funds for wealthy Chinese nationals to gamble in British Columbia’s casinos, while also moving drug cash that they collected in the province back to China and Latin America.
Eby’s letter predated the Cullen Commission, and pointed out to the findings of Canadian anti-money laundering experts, like former RCMP Executive Peter German, stating that the data shows that there is a clear need for significant legal reforms, which include a Canadian iteration of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act.
Also known as RICO, the anti-racketeering legislation was passed by the US Congress in 1970 in order to fight back against the growing influence of La Cosa Nostra, the Italian mafia networks with involvements in corruption and underground economies across the country, with directions coming from kingpins in New York.
Additionally, Eby also asked for reforms to Canada’s criminal money laundering and asset seizure laws, pointing out that the US Government and the International Financial Action Task Force labeled the country as a ‘major money laundering jurisdiction’, a status borne of the country’s reportedly ineffective law and underfunded and poorly equipped agencies.
There are some discussions in the legal field regarding the matter, with law firms like MyDefence.ca considering the merit of Canada’s own version of RICO laws, but some are saying that it’s better to focus on ensuring that prosecution and police services are properly staffed, trained, and funded to deal with the long-term and complicated investigations that money laundering cases tend to lead to.