National tv network to feature bootlegging gold stories from Timmins

Timmins, Ont. has a long history of being a booming gold mining town and while that wealth attracted many miners it also attracted many criminals.

Series to be based on books by Timmins author Kevin Vincent

Bootlegging Gold Volumes 1 and 2, by Kevin Vincent, highlights stories of gold heists in Timmins and northern Ontario. The books are being turned into a national tv mini-series. (Dave White/CBC)
Kevin Vincent, a Timmins author who wrote two books showcasing the bootlegging gold industry in Timmins, will have his work showcased nationally. The books are being turned into a television mini-series. 5:55

Timmins, Ont. has a long history of being a booming gold mining town and while that wealth attracted many miners it also attracted many criminals.

Author Kevin Vincent wrote about some legendary heists in his books Bootleg Gold Volumes 1 and 2.

Now, a national television network is turning those books into a mini-series.

"These are stories that people go, 'are you kidding me?'" he said.

Kevin Vincent is a Timmins author. (Supplied/Kevin Vincent)

"A lot of the gold that was smuggled out of places like Timmins and Kirkland Lake … collectively was going to the hands of very well organized crime figures and that gold ended up going overseas and much of it ended up in the hands of the Germans during World War Two."

Other stories include stolen gold ending up being sold to the Canadian Mint and police officers getting involved in the heists.

Filming to start next month

Vincent says he was approached last year from a national television network.

"This particular network expressed a great deal of interest in the books," he said.

"[They] wanted to help tell the stories because they've really never been told on television."

Vincent says the production team is travelling to Timmins this month to scout locations and start filming in February.

Kevin Vincent is the author of Bootleg Gold Volumes 1 and 2. (Supplied/bootleggold.net/)

He says he's not able to share which network approached him, but says he expects the series to be on tv in the next year.

"I think you're going to see a real mix of some on camera interviews with people that have a direct connection to whole world of high grading and gold smuggling," he said.

"In addition to that, I think you're going to see some reenactments. They're going to retell some stories that have really captured the imagination."

About the Author

Martha Dillman

Reporter

Martha Dillman is a multimedia journalist based in Sudbury. You can find her on Twitter @marthaCBC or by email martha.dillman@cbc.ca