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Proceeds of Crime Program

“The only way you’re going to hurt the drug industry and organized crime is at the money source; money is always in action, invested for the next load; the money is the key; if you stop the money you stop the drug dealing in this country because without the money, you can’t put an operation together. You’re never going to dry up the demand, and you’re never going to dry up the supply; you’ve got to dry up the operations.” **
- Former convicted money launderer

Anything bought with money generated by crime can legally be taken away. The RCMP’s Proceeds of Crime units hit criminals where it hurts them most: we seize their money, cars, boats, planes and houses. Such proceeds of crime undermine the social and economic well-being of Canadians while increasing the power and influence of organized criminals and their illegal enterprises.

Protecting Canada’s economic integrity and fighting organized crime are two of the RCMP’s strategic priorities. Strong links exist between financial crime and organized crime, and we know that criminals are using sophisticated techniques to launder money and hide their illicit profits. Proceeds of Crime is dedicated to finding ways to stop them.

The majority of Proceeds of Crime investigations are linked to organized crime. The IPOC (Integrated Proceeds of Crime) initiative’s goal is: to contribute to the disruption, dismantling and incapacitation of targeted organized criminals and crime groups.

Proceeds of Crime Branch (POCB)

Our goal is to dismantle criminal organizations and prevent them from regrouping.

The RCMP Headquarters Proceeds of Crime Branch in Ottawa is responsible for policy development, program planning, program monitoring, and resource allocation. This includes identifying areas of legislative weakness and pursuing statute amendments.

How "Integrated” is IPOC ?

Organized crime is fluid and recognizes no borders. There’s no way to track or fight it alone. If you like teamwork and believe in intelligence-led policing, this is the place for you. Working with local, national and international partners, the RCMP’s Proceeds of Crime Program operates as a major partner in the fight against organized crime.

IPOC Partners

The RCMP is the lead agency responsible for daily operations and the management of each IPOC unit. Principal activities include:

  • Assessing leads for potential investigation
  • Determining investigative priorities and identifying targets of investigations
  • Managing and conducting investigations
  • Providing advice and assistance to other RCMP units and other forces for investigations involving significant asset seizures
  • Providing investigative assistance and support to the prosecution (when charges are laid) over the course of judicial proceedings.

In July 2006, an Ontario Superior Court Justice concluded there was nothing unconstitutional in proceeds of crime legislation that requires criminals to forfeit profits they’ve made from crime, or to pay fines if those profits have disappeared.

Money Laundering: Scope of the Problem

“We were most worried about the police finding our money, because that’s where we’re most vulnerable. It was the only way you could stop me. For the first time in my life, I went to jail broke.”**
Former high-level money launderer following conviction and removal of his criminal assets

While an exact dollar amount can never be established, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has stated that the total amount of money being laundered in the world could be in the range of 2-5 percent of world Gross Domestic Product (approximately $900 billion to $2.25 trillion Canadian dollars).

Money Laundering Offences

  • It is a criminal offence to launder money in Canada. Section 462.31 of the Criminal Code of Canada deals specifically with this issue.
  • Money laundering is an offence which carries up to a maximum of 10 years imprisonment. A minor offence can be dealt with by way of summary conviction.

Money Laundering Program

The Money Laundering Program operates as a partner in the Anti-Money Laundering/Anti-Terrorist Financing Initiative. It’s shared outcome is "Contributing to the control and deterrence of money laundering, organized crime and terrorist financing activities."

The RCMP Money Laundering Unit's roles and responsibilities are:

  • To receive intelligence from a wide variety of sources. For example, the Money Laundering Unit is a major recipient of suspected money laundering intelligence from FINTRAC. We also receive intelligence related to cross-border currency smuggling from the Canada Border Services Agency. We receive information from other RCMP units, other law enforcement and intelligence agencies, and private sector businesses. Financial institutions provide us with information about suspicious transactions and the general public contact us with complaints.
  • Upon receipt of intelligence, the Money Laundering Unit conducts an investigative assessment to determine whether a criminal investigation is warranted.
  • We provide Voluntary Information Reports to FINTRAC
  • We train and raise awareness among our partners

** Evaluation of the IPOC Initiative for fiscal years 2001 to 2004 .
Prepared for: Policing, Law Enforcement and Interoperability., Public Safety Canada (PSC)
Prepared by: Consulting and Audit Canada, Project No.: 520-1074, February 2005 .
These quotations were taken from an interview with a former high-level money launderer, who purportedly renounced such a life following a lengthy conviction and removal of his criminal assets. He spoke to one of the IPOC units and allowed the interview to be taped.