Friday, December 1, 2017

ICBC to investigate claims linked to casino Chinese money-laundering probe

B.C. attorney general orders ICBC to investigate claims linked to casino Chinese money-laundering probe

Image result for ICBC Chinese River Rock money-laundering probe

B.C. Attorney General David Eby has ordered ICBC to investigate a number of car accident and injury claim cases after reviewing an investigative report provided by Postmedia News.
Postmedia’s review of civil forfeiture cases involving a Vancouver used auto dealer, and numerous individual car accident and ICBC claims cases, points to a network of individuals with connections to Paul King Jin, the suspect at the centre of RCMP’s investigation into money laundering in B.C. casinos.
“This is very troubling information,” Eby told Postmedia in an interview. “I’ve asked ICBC to investigate the information you’ve provided.”
Government documents and RCMP’s investigation allege that Jin is connected to organized crime, private lenders and “high-risk” VIP gamblers recruited from Macau. Jin and his network allegedly provided these “whale” gamblers with stacks of suspected drug cash to buy chips in B.C. casinos. Several charges have been laid in the RCMP’s investigation and more charges are expected, but allegations have not been proven in court. Jin has not been charged.

Paul King Jin. Paul Jin is at the centre of a probe into underground banking and money laundering, the RCMP alleges. 

Jin is also connected to Lucky Eight Enterprises, a Vancouver used auto dealer. Court filings show that Lucky Eight has been named in about 10 motor vehicle crash claims involving drivers who leased company vehicles, including a case involving Jin.
There are two B.C. civil forfeiture cases involving Lucky Eight.
In March 2017, B.C.’s director of civil forfeiture seized a 2008 Mercedes CL65 owned by Lucky Eight and leased to Chad Hubick.
Court records show that Hubick has several convictions for theft and possession of stolen goods.
According to the civil forfeiture claim, Hubick was arrested in December 2015, and a police investigation alleged that he used the Mercedes to steal valuable building supplies from a number of Westside Vancouver home construction sites, and to deliver the goods to East Vancouver storage lockers registered to Lucky Eight’s owner, Hao Guo. Hubick was authorized to access Hao Guo’s storage lockers, the claim alleges.
The claim alleges that proceeds from crimes including thefts and drug trafficking were used to make payments on the Mercedes and “were used to increase (Lucky Eight and Hubick’s) interest in the vehicle.”
In a second case, in December 2016, B.C.’s director of civil forfeiture seized a 2004 Acura TSX from Lucky Eight.
Lucky Eight was the registered owner of the Acura, and it was leased to Meng Ji Chen, the claim says. In August 2015 Vancouver police stopped the car and arrested Chen, the driver, and passenger Yan Wang, an employee of Lucky Eight.
Claim documents state that police searched Chen and found 21 “spitballs” of cocaine and $120. Police searched Yan Wang and found $980 in cash, plus three cellphones, and in the car’s trunk they found a baseball bat and two cellphones.
The claim says that Lucky Eight knew or ought to have known that Chen and Wang were using the car to sell drugs.
“Proceeds from the trafficking of illegal drugs were used to increase the defendants’ interest in the vehicle,” the claim alleges.

The Lucky 8 used car lot in the 700-block Kingsway in Vancouver is the business address of Lucky Eight Enterprises, which has been involved in two B.C. civil forfeiture cases and is named in about 10 motor vehicle crash claims involving drivers who leased company vehicles.  

Jin and Lucky Eight are named as co-defendants along with a man who is associated to Jin and Lucky Eight, according to legal filings, in an April 2014 vehicle accident injury claim.
Jin had acquired possession of the vehicle while it was leased to Jin’s associate and owned by Lucky Eight, legal filings say. Jin was the driver when the car collided with another vehicle at No. 3 and Saba Road in Richmond. Jia Guo, a passenger in another vehicle, alleged that he suffered injuries. Jin, Lucky Eight, and ICBC as third-party defendant denied any wrongdoing, according to a response filed in April 2017. The case has not yet been resolved.
In a phone interview on Monday, Lucky Eight representative Ralph Lanzel said that Hao Guo could not answer questions for this story because he was “out of town.” Lanzel said he is authorized to speak for Lucky Eight and Hao Guo.
Lanzel said Lucky Eight co-operated with B.C.’s director of civil forfeiture in the two cases, and that the company is not involved in any wrongdoing. Lanzel said that he does not recognize the name of Paul King Jin, and that Lucky Eight does not currently have “any issues with ICBC” or any other regulator.
“When it comes to Chinese names, I don’t have a clue what you’re talking about,” Lanzel said. “These guys go under different names in English and Chinese.”
“We’re unable to discuss individual claims due to privacy but we are aware of the police investigation (of Paul Jin’s alleged VIP gambler lending network),” ICBC spokeswoman Lindsay Olsen said in a response to Postmedia, before Eby ordered an ICBC investigation.
In a separate example of cases that Eby asked ICBC to investigate, Postmedia found that a man named Jia Xiang Rong claims he has been injured in four separate vehicle accidents since 2011. The man claims that he has lost opportunities to earn income, and also “continues to sustain a loss of housekeeping capacity.”
Jia Xiang Rong lives at a home in the 3200-block East 8th Avenue, an injury claim states, and that he is an “office assistant.”
According to the title document for that property, Jia Xiang Rong claims he is a “car finisher.” The co-owner of the property, Li Zhen Gu, is a “housewife.”
According to mortgage foreclosure documents filed in B.C. Supreme Court, Li Zhen Gu is one of six private lenders involved in the foreclosure of a South Granville home on Wiltshire Street. The home was purchased for $3.6 million in 2013 with a mortgage from CIBC, but now has $8 million in loans registered against it from private lenders, some associated to Paul Jin through other real estate lending cases.
The South Granville home is owned by a man with multiple luxury properties in Vancouver and Richmond, according to legal filings. His name is listed in B.C. Lottery Corp. documents as one of about 40 VIP B.C. casino gamblers connected in 2015 to cash deliveries from the “Jin network.”
Also, Li Zhen Gu is listed as an additional owner of a 7000-block Burris Street home in Burnaby. This is the home address of a private lender involved along with Paul King Jin in a second mortgage foreclosure case, legal filings say. The man has also been identified in a BCLC document as an associate of Paul Jin. This second case involving Jin and nine other private lenders, pointed to a Macau high-roller named Jia Gui Gao, who logged 28 suspicious casino transactions in B.C., according to BCLC documents. Jia Gui Gao was owner of an $8 million West Vancouver home with $28.8 million in loans registered against it.
“The private lenders were well aware of Mr. Gao’s gambling problem and took advantage of his addiction,” Gao responded, in the West Vancouver foreclosure case.
A third owner of the 7000-block Burris Street home, according to land title records, is also listed as a private lender in the South Granville, Wiltshire Street foreclosure case.
This person is also listed as residing at a 2000-Block Euclid Avenue home in Vancouver, legal filings say. The Euclid Avenue home is the registered address of a director of an offshore investment company listed in the Panama Papers database. This listed director, is also one of the six private lenders involved in the Wiltshire Street mortgage foreclosure case.
This investment company, which is registered in the British Virgin Islands and linked to Hong Kong, according to offshore banking leaks, has 16 shareholders in total. Most of the shareholders list luxury Metro Vancouver properties as director addresses, and several list addresses in Hong Kong and China’s Guangdong province.
Meanwhile, more information on Paul Jin’s alleged lending network has come to light. Legal filings say that in 2013 Jin was owed $500,000 for a homebuilding loan on an 8000-block French Street property in Vancouver. The man that allegedly failed to pay back Jin on time for this loan, which had a 15 day term at zero interest rate according to the claim, is currently listed at the French Street address as director for the Vancouver International Chinese Association. This is the registered association that is claimed to have leased a Richmond mansion in the 8800-block Sidaway Road. B.C.’s director of civil forfeiture alleges this Richmond mansion was used for illegal gambling, money laundering, and kidnapping. The man that owns the Richmond mansion, according to the civil forfeiture claim, is also named in corporate documents as a former director of a Richmond massage parlour run by Paul Jin. Jin was a director of the massage parlour along with a number of directors in Mainland China, records say, before the club was shut down for bylaw infractions.

Great Canadian, the operator of River Rock Casino in Richmond, says it filed reports on large cash transactions involving Paul Jin in 2012. The B.C. Lottery Corp. later barred Jin from B.C. casinos, and the RCMP launched an investigation into Jin in 2014. 

According to a legal letter from Great Canadian, the operator of River Rock Casino, Paul Jin conducted 50 large cash transactions from May 2012 to September 2012 at the casino, and Great Canadian filed reports on these transactions.
After that, BCLC made the decision to bar Jin from B.C. casinos, according to Great Canadian’s legal letter.
“After Jin was barred, River Rock staff were the first to uncover the lending activities of Jin and his group near River Rock,” the legal letter from Great Canadian asserts. “In Jin’s case, after numerous reports filed by Great Canadian with both BCLC and (B.C.’s gaming enforcement branch) between 2012 and 2014, the RCMP eventually agreed to investigate Jin in 2014.”

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments always welcome!