The Richmond RCMP continues to crack down on illegal gambling activities in the Province of British Columbia. Most recently, the local law enforcement reported that it has searched a house at Skaha Crescent in Richmond, where it discovered an alleged unlawful gambling den. After the raid, sixteen people were arrested, including two non-Canadian citizens.
The recent investigation was headed by Richmond RCMP’s organized crime unit which was aided by the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit of British Columbia’s joint illegal gaming investigation team and uniform gang enforcement team. Also, the Canadian Border Services Agency and Lower Mainland District police dog services unit were also involved in the act.
Findings from the Bust
According to the press release from the RCMP, the police raid occurred on December 1, 2022, at a house in Skaha Crescent near Azure Road. At the site, officers arrested 16 individuals, including a 45-year-old Richmond and 49-year-old Surrey man, who are believed to be taken care of the illegal gambling den. Also, a 34-year-old Richmond man and 38-year-old Vancouver woman.
The police revealed that the latter two were professional card dealers. Also, it should be noted that two people, one of them a caretaker and the other a card dealer, were not Canadian citizens and will be deported. In the release, the RCMP states that the majority of the individuals were actively participating at illegal gaming at the time of the police raid.
Some of the confiscated items in the raid from December 2022, include more than CA$14,000 in cash, gambling ledgers, an automated Mahjong table, a poker table, chips and cards. Staff Sergeant Patrick Damgajian, Richmond RCMP organized crime unit commander commented that the raid was successful and the police managed to acquire valuable intel as well as disrupting the illegal den.
Sgt. Brenda Winpenny, spokesperson for CFSEU-BC, commented that the agency often works closely with Richmond RCMP. She added that unlawful gambling often correlates to serious criminal offences and CFSEU-BC and its partners are working together at every opportunity to mitigate and negate the impact of organized crime in the local community.
Prominent Issue in the Province
Over the years, B.C. has had its fair share of illicit gambling operations discovered by the law enforcement. In the summer of 2022, a court has agreed to adjourn three cases for the alleged running of illegal gambling dens until June this year. The three perpetrators were Wu Rong Zan, 45, Ng Mun Bun, 55, and Li Wen Bo, 47. And their cases were adjourned for several months.
Also, back in 2019, after suspicious of illegal gaming activities, the CFSEU-BC and Vancouver RCMP busted a house in Shaughnessy. At the location, they found and seized a card table and the owner’s phone. However, the homeowner claimed that the table was used by him and his friends to play games during friendly gatherings and that they were not violating the law.
Source: Hui, Vikki “Alleged Richmond illegal gambling den busted by police, 16 arrested” Richmond News, January 17, 2023