A new report about policing of Metro Vancouver port terminal facilities says there's "literally no downside" for organized criminals to set up shop, and one British Columbia city is sounding the alarm.
Delta Mayor George Harvie says the city commissioned the report about the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority’s Roberts Bank Terminal amid "rampant" criminal activity due to a lack of funds for policing.
The report by consultants Peter German and Doug LePard, both former police officers, examines the past and present state of port security since the disbanding of the Ports Canada Police in 1997.
It says B.C. ports have been corrupted by the infiltration of organized crime groups, including the Hells Angels, as well as Russian, Asian and South Asian criminal organizations and Mexican drug cartels.
Harvie says the lack of police resources dedicated to port facilities means criminal activities such as drug trafficking will only get worse, highlighting the need to "fortify" Canada's ports to protect communities and national security.
The Roberts Bank Terminal is the country's largest container terminal and handles upwards of three million containers annually, and expansion plans will see that number increase to more than five million once completed.