Ian Mulgrew: Casino cash tied to property-backed loans

Ian Mulgrew: Casino cash tied to property-backed loans

JIN: «(I am) a member of a private lending business serving a clientele with diverse needs. Sometimes, I lend my money; at times, I lend my associates’ money.»

Paul King Jin: «(I am) a member of a private lending business serving a clientele with diverse needs. Sometimes, I lend my money; at times, I lend my associates’ money.» Photo by Ina Mitchell / PNG

The 653-page document titled, “Paul Jin Debt Enforcement Against B.C. Real Estate,” details more than 20 big-time gamblers accused of owing massive debts to him as well as possible competitors – suspected loan sharks and private lenders.

Inquiry commissioner Austin Cullen ruled that only a redacted version of the report would be released and given to Jin, who has not complied with a summons to produce a host of records.

The lawsuits involve homes and property reputedly pledged as collateral for staggering borrowed sums – $2.3 million, $1 million, $8 million, $2.68 million, $750,000, $892,000, $1.2 million …

“Jia Gui Gao is documented in BCLC records as a banned high-risk patron. …There are 166 separate incidents documented in Gao’s iTrak file dating from , including chip and cash passing, suspicious activity and large buy-ins with unsourced cash. He was barred for five years beginning due to unspecified ‘public safety’ concerns. … (He was of the) top 10 (suspicious cash transaction) patrons (for 2014), with suspicious cash transactions totalling $5,530,720.”

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“(Blank) is identified in BCLC documents as a high-risk patron. … A report in 2014 notes that (he) bought in for $3,205,200 at Lower Mainland casinos between bling again in , his buy-ins totalled some $11.9 million.”

The report contains casino staff observations on patron vehicles, arrival times, and the names and physical descriptions of their friends and family.

In court documents, Jin describes himself as “a member of a private lending business serving a clientele with diverse needs. Sometimes, I lend my money. At times, I lend my associates’ money.”

The federal and provincial governments as well as the B.C. Lottery Corp. argued against making the entire report public and said they would want a chance to withdraw some of their contributions for fear sources could be identified.

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They also maintained Jin’s refusal to comply with his participant obligations “reflects a lack of commitment to the commission’s processes and militates against providing Mr. Jin with sensitive documents in the possession of other participants.”

Jin was ordered to produce records of any loans he made on his behalf or any entity controlled by him, including promissory notes, communications in respect of such loans, and records relating to any security for such loans such as mortgage agreements, records relating to the enforcement of any loan made by or on his behalf or any entity he controlled including but not limited to communications with borrowers by SMS, WeChat and email.

“Mr. Jin has not complied with his document obligations. … Nor has he produced any documents in response to the summons,” Cullen said.

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“While Mr. Jin’s non-compliance with his document production obligations has not factored into my decision on this application, I refer to it here because it was the subject of submissions.”

The first part of the report released this week provides a list of debt-enforcement proceedings commenced by Jin or his spouse, Xiao Qi Wei, along with a list of mortgages filed by them and companies under their apparent control. The second part provides a summary of the proceedings, including the substance of any response and the status. The third part sumbling history of individuals who allegedly borrowed from Jin. And finally, it provides a summary of recent mortgage lending activity by entities associated with Jin, including two issued by companies which list his son, Jesse Xin Jia, as sole director.

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“By reference to documents collected through open-source research or by way of production to the commission by participants, we were able to connect most of the borrowers to often extensive gambling activities in British Columbia casinos, both legitimate and underground, and, in some cases, to casinos located overseas,” the report’s overview explained.

There are allegations Jin charged usurious interest, as much as 120 per cent a year, and threatened some clients who fell behind in their payments.

The report, which takes no position on the truth of the claims, attaches public records but not material provided by gaming-sector participants such as BCLC and the Gaming Policy and Enforcement Branch.

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