Cullen Commission Whistle-blower Repeat Testimony
The former anti-money laundering director, Ross Alderson, has made a follow-up appearance at the Cullen Commission to provide further testimony.
The former head of anti-money laundering operations, Ross Alderson, has reappeared at the Cullen Commission to provide additional testimony in money laundering operations. Following his first appearance in May, Alderson is now set to give further insight into the matter.
The Cullen Commission has been mandated to investigate potential money laundering activities that reportedly took place across British Columbia. The inquiry, chaired by commissioner Austin Cullen, has been asked to compile a final report into the matter by December, to prevent the repeat of such cases in the future.
Ross Alderson stated last Tuesday that after he started working in 2011 as a casino investigator at the River Rock Casino Resort in Richmond, he was astonished by the amount of cash used by high rollers at the casino. He noted that the money was often delivered to the players from vehicles that would pull up in front of the casino or via cash packages delivered following telephone calls.
According to Alderson, the transactions would often reach CA$500,000. Alderson additionally stated that he and one of his associates, crime investigator Mike Hiller, believed this money originated from crime. He added that he was once stopped by the casino’s general manager when he tried to intervene in what he thought to be a money-washing transaction, being told that he had no authority to interrogate gamblers or intercept transactions.
Alderson said that, following the dispute with the manager, he held a meeting with two other investigators, Terry Towns and Gord Friesen. Alderson claimed that Towns, who oversaw compliance, ordered him not to question the casino’s patrons and their cash sources. The ex-investigator also discussed the matter with Friesen, who advised him that all that matters is keeping the revenue high.
Alderson added that he was aware that in 2014, Hiller forwarded a report to the British Columbia Lottery Corporation, discussing a network of high rollers from China. These individuals would gamble at the casino using loans from notorious loan sharks involved in drug smuggling. These loans were later repaid in China for lower fees. Alderson will continue his testimony this week.