Canadian Diplomat Linked To Shady Investment In A Macau Casino
John Peter Bell has held top posts in his career including being the Canadian ambassador to Malaysia. His reputation took a hit after he was linked to a dangerous scheme in which he allegedly took monthly payouts.
Bell is believed to have invested in a VIP room in a Macau casino that is reportedly connected to Triads and corruption. Documents state that this shady arrangement may have put Canadian Revenue Agency prosecutions at risk.
The VIP room in question was leased by a consortium of investors from Hong Kong tycoon Stanley Ho who is a gambling mogul believed to be connected to organized crime in China.
Bell has tried to clear his name by insisting that he did not give money directly to Ho. Rather, he gave a $250,000 loan to a group of investors which happened to include Bell’s cousin. Bell claimed that he knows very little about the VIP room in Macau. All he was knows was that his investment paid off and every month he received a return on his investment. He denied knowing that he was doing business with the Macau triads and that he had no idea that there was anything illegal going on.
Further Investigations To Come
An investigation has shown affidavits and other evidence including emails and accounting records that were created between 2000 and 2011 and filed in the B.C. Supreme Court. Denis Meunier of Transparency International Canada stated that he has never seen a Macau VIP room bring profit to a Canadian Investor. Meunier was once the deputy director of an anti-money laundering agency and was also a director of criminal investigations with the Canada Revenue Agency.
The evidence in this case certainly raises red flags with the people of British Columbia who are trying to figure out how the scheme is tied to rampant money laundering at B.C. Lottery-operated casinos. Meunier asserts that the case warrants further investigation.
VIP Rooms Connected To Crime
It has been widely reported that Ho’s VIP rooms were linked to loan sharking, money laundering, narcotics trafficking and prostitution as well as Triad gang wars. The 96-year-old Ho has long maintained that his businesses are not tied to money laundering or gangs. Documents in the United States claim that the VIP rooms were used by corrupt officials who laundered ill-gotten money through organized crime and high-limit bets.
Emails refer to Bell’s $250,000 investment in the Macau casino’s VIP room as a loan to his cousin but Levy filed an affidavit in 2010 and no loan was mentioned in it. Further developments are sure to come.