Police investigating series of extortion threats linked with shooting in B.C.

Threats target businesses

Mounties in British Columbia say they are investigating a series of extortion threats that police say may be linked.

RCMP say they are working with police in Abbotsford to advance the investigation after reports surfaced that a number of businesses received threats.

Police say one incident involved shots fired at a home in White Rock, which they said was "deeply concerning."

A photo of one letter circulating on social media warned the recipient against going to police while demanding "protection money" be paid either locally or in India.

B.C. Premier David Eby says he found the extortion letters and threats "profoundly concerning," while he urged those who received the threats to go to police.

Eby says he understands people "in particular in the South Asian community" are anxious, but police cannot proceed without victims reporting the threats.

"One of the big challenges that police have outlined to us that they're facing is that people who received these threats are sometimes reluctant to come forward," he said. "The only way that police can deal with this — make arrests, investigate — is if they know what's happening."

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