British Columbia

Cullen commission money laundering report due in May gets extension to December

Citing delays created by COVID-19 and B.C.'s provincial election, the government is allowing an extension for the Cullen Commission to produce its final report.

COVID-19 and provincial election created delays

Commissioner Austin Cullen, pictured during the first day of hearings in February 2020, has until Dec. 15 to prepare his report and recommendations. (Ben Nelms/CBC)

The British Columbia government has granted a commission into money laundering an extension to produce its final report and make recommendations.

The report was due in May, but the commission now has until Dec. 15 to produce its final report.

A commission statement says the COVID-19 pandemic created delays by forcing the hearings and much of its work to be done online.

It says the extension gives commissioner Austin Cullen the time necessary to hear and consider evidence and prepare the report, including recommendations.

The commission also says last fall's B.C. election caused a delay as hearings were postponed during the campaign.

The government appointed Cullen, a B.C. Supreme Court justice, in May 2019 to conduct an independent public inquiry into money laundering after three reports outlined how hundreds of millions of dollars in illegal cash affected the province's real estate, luxury vehicle and gaming sectors.

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