On 27th February, the Globe & Mail reported that structural changes are required to clamp down on the unregulated private lending networks that drug traffickers are using to launder their illicit gains, a Simon Fraser University criminologist says. A recent Globe and Mail investigation identified people connected to the local fentanyl trade who are also private lenders, using Vancouver-area real estate to clean their cash. It identified 12 private lenders associated with the illicit drug trade and other crimes. Neil Boyd, a criminology professor at SFU, said the complexity of these private lending networks and similar white-collar crimes make them notoriously hard to prosecute. The article explains that the problem area involves the individuals granting a loan, then register a land title charge against the borrower’s real estate equal to the value of the debt, plus interest. The charge, which gives them a stake in the real estate, remains in place until the debt is cleared. If the property is sold, the loan is paid out from the sale proceeds, in clean money, all seemingly legal – except these financiers are unregulated and unlicensed, and the loans they grant are in cash likely derived from drug deals or other crimes.