B.C. gov't sets sights on Hells Angel's cash
An assault rifle, handguns and nearly $4 million in cash seized from the Hells Angels motorcycle gang in B.C. is seen in this RCMP handout photo in Vancouver, Monday, August 27, 2012. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO - RCMP
, The Canadian Press
Published Monday, January 28, 2013 3:27PM PST
Last Updated Monday, January 28, 2013 4:32PM PST
VANCOUVER -- The B.C. government is targeting friends and members of the East End Chapter of the Hells Angels, hoping for some financial gain from what it claims are proceeds of crime.
The civil claim filed by the Attorney General's Ministry in B.C. Supreme Court asks that the province be allowed to keep $58,400 seized on Nov. 17, 2004 from Randall Potts, a member of the chapter.
"At the material times, Mr. Potts engaged in unlawful activities for the benefit of, in association with, at the direction of, or to enhance the ability of a criminal organization, namely, the East End Chapter to commit indictable offences," says the court document from the director of civil forfeiture.
It was the second application filed Friday in connection with the Hells Angels.
Under the Civil Forfeiture Act, the provincial government can apply to the courts to seize proceeds of unlawful activity.
Potts was convicted March 12, 2010 of conspiring to produce and traffic methamphetamine, as well as possession of proceeds or property obtained by crime.
The government alleges all or a portion of the $58,400 was made from people who bought drugs or was obtained directly or indirectly from illegal activity.
It also alleges Potts either participated directly in the sale of illegal drugs or obtained the money directly or indirectly from people who sold illegal drugs.
The government also alleges the money would have been used to produce, purchase or traffic illegal drugs had it not been seized, or it would have been applied to the commission of other offences.
The notice of civil claim is similar to one filed earlier Friday against chapter "hangaround" Jonathan Bryce Jr.
In that case, the B.C. government hopes to keep more than $187,000 seized on March 19, 2005.
Both men have 21 days to respond to the application.
Since 2006, the civil forfeiture office has taken in more than $28.7 million, including more than $10.8 million in 2011, the ministry says.
The ministry uses proceeds of crime to fund programs battling youth crime, human trafficking, sexual exploitation, family violence and violence against women.