Alberta to sell proceeds of crime
The Alberta government is hoping to sell about $500,000 worth of property believed to be the proceeds of crime, Justice Minister Alison Redford said Monday.
The items were seized within the last two months, after the Victims Restitution and Compensation Payment Act was enacted in December giving the province the ability to sell these items even though there hasn't been a criminal conviction.
"We'll start making these applications before the court and the court will have to decide what to do with that," Redford said.
Some of the items seized include luxury cars and materials used for a marijuana grow operation.
If the property is eventually sold, Redford said the money would be earmarked for victims of crime and groups that support victims of crime.
"I think it matters when we as a government say not only is this behaviour unacceptable, not only do we want to stop it, but we're actually going to stand up for people who have been victimized," she said.
Redford said the province needs to take this action in order to crack down on the growing problem of organized crime and gangs.
Liberal justice critic Kent Hehr said he's in favour of the province's actions, but questions the timing of the ministers' announcement. Hehr has a private member's bill up for debate in the legislature Monday afternoon which is also aimed at organized crime.
He said Redford timed her announcement to distract the public from paying attention to his proposed legislation.