Dr. Peter German knows a thing or two about dirty money and he is happy to share that knowledge.
The author of Dirty Money: An Independent Review of Money Laundering in Lower Mainland Casinos is a former senior RCMP officer. Commissioned as an independent review of money laundering allegations in B.C. casinos, the report was released to the public in June of 2018 by the Attorney General of B.C.
Though the report is now more than a year old, German has remained active in researching the movements of profit from organized crime groups, which are ongoing and constantly evolving in order to outpace law enforcement agencies.
“This is an evolving study. There are news reports every day, there are court cases every day, there are things happening every day. So this area evolves constantly. And it’s pretty clear that certain things have happened as a result of the report, or as a result of the public interest,” said German. “People understand that money laundering is the back office of organized crime.”
German has presented on these topics many times in recent years. He says people of all demographics have shown deep interest in his work.
“What I try to do in my presentations is bring people up to date on where things are. And also on the organized crime side of things. The burning question is – if they’re not running their money through casinos now, or certainly not the way they did a few years ago – where is it going? Because it’s busy as ever,” said German.
He goes on to laud the work of the Attorney General David Eby in helping bring to light the social consequences of organized crime, most notably the opioid crisis that has taken a devastating toll on people across B.C.
Profits from the sale of illegal and deadly opioids like fentanyl have been pushed through casinos, in turn allowing the underground industry to flourish.
“It’s all part and parcel of the same issue,” said German.
Although much of the regulation that’s needed takes place at the federal and provincial level, he says educating the public is an important aspect of creating systemic change and driving investigations such as the Cullen Commission, the current public inquiry on money laundering in B.C.
“To fix these things, you need political will. And that’s why it’s important for the public to understand what’s going on, and provide a certain – I suppose – pressure on politicians to deal with this,” said German.
German will be speaking on Saturday, Oct. 19, from 10 a.m. until about noon at the Nanoose Place Community Centre at 2925 Northwest Bay Rd., in Nanoose Bay. Admission is $10 per person cash at the door, and those under 18 can attend for free.