Claxton alarm

Earlier, in an exclusive interview, the former commander of British Columbia's anti-illegal gaming enforcement team Fred Pinnock said his unit wasn't charged with keeping tabs on what happens inside legal gaming facilities - although it should have been. "For the police not to have well-resourced law enforcement units dedicated to casino environments is very short-sighted in my opinion," he explained. But that wasn't the first Mr. Pinnock publicly expressed concern about whether enough was being done to ensure the province's legal gaming facilities are crime free.

In an interview with the Langley Advance's Matthew Claxton three years ago, Mr. Pinnock said the fact there haven't been complaints about loan sharking at casinos doesn't necessarily mean it isn't happening. "Victims don't complain, until they are threatened or at serious risk."

And Mr. Claxton paraphrased him as saying part of the problem is that the provincial government's gaming policy and enforcement branch "a group mostly composed of retired police officers, don't have any police powers. They can't arrest people, get warrants or do active surveillance."

The branch can assist local police forces when there's a report of suspected criminal activity at a legal gaming facility.

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