British Columbia’s money-laundering ring used a wide variety of front businesses in order to facilitate the criminal operation happening in the meantime. Recently issued allegations add a brand-new player to the game, this time a Vancouver-based cosmetics company called Ritzy Product, suggesting that the company facilitated the washing of copious amounts of dirty cash teaming up with Silver International.
A new player joined the game and this is a seemingly harmless business such as the cosmetics company targeting females of all ages with its offerings. Vancouver law-enforcement discovered a link between the company offering various cosmetic and personal care products and the money-laundering ring that included Silver International Investment Ltd. The ongoing probe conducted by the local police called “Project Trunkline” sought to reveal more about potential drug trafficking in the area and laundering cash, eventually revealing a link between the two companies.
Front Businesses Facilitate Money-Laundering
A civil forfeiture case reveals that there is a connection between the cosmetics business and the already investigated by the RCMP Richmond-based business. In the process of investigation, police officers had the task to follow around people working for the company and get a better idea of the way Ritzy Product works. Employees of the company had the task to move around boxes with products delivering them to their customers.
The entire range of products offered by the cosmetics company is stored at a warehouse located in Vancouver, facilitating the process. Police officers were able to identify and locate the mastermind behind the company, commonly referred to as Mr. Wong. He was on site of the warehouse and ready to bag some of the parcels for delivery. Officers estimated that the time to investigate further is right and shortly after that, they proceeded to pull him over in order to inspect the boxes he transported.
Upon inspection, they discovered that Mr. Wong’s cargo contained some CA$215,000 in cash with an unidentified source. Police officers then returned to the warehouse and raided it, discovering CA$5,000 more in cash available on site. Mandatory tests for cocaine residue came back positive on some of the banknotes. What linked the two companies was the fact that Mr. Wong was caught on tape making his way to Silver International’s office carrying boxes and bags.
Silver International Records Feature Ritzy Product’s Director
The CCTV footage investigated after the raid at the warehouse revealed that Ritzy Product’s Director had been making trips to Richmond delivering parcels to the office of the company that is already investigated for being an alleged front for laundering of dirty cash. It could be recalled that 2017 was the year when the Richmond company was accused of being the central hub of money-laundering operation involving casino venues in the region to the likes of River Rock Casino.
Caixuan Qin and her partner Jian Ju Zhu are the alleged kingpins behind this criminal operation and ever since December 2018, the British Columbia Civil Forfeiture Office targets them. In a recent statement, they made it clear that their basic rights were violated by the authorities with the raids they conducted at their home and business office. According to records available at Silver International, Mr. Wong was a regular customer of the company, referred to as ‘Nelson’ or ‘Nel’.
Back in 2015, he managed to see as much as CA$3.8 million in deposit transactions, as well as up to CA$20,000 withdrawn. A recent court filing claims that two vehicles and cash available at the warehouse of Ritzy Product are the result of trafficking of substances and washing crime cash. However, the lawyer protecting Mr. Wong in court stated that the cosmetics company is not in any way connected to Silver International. The probe continues seeking answers, while British Columbians seek a public inquiry.