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Making a Killing: Cult-turned crime syndicate implicated in Ontario car-theft ring

Toronto, Ontario — A recent report by a Canadian financial intelligence unit has identified Black Axe as one of the groups involved in the recent surge of stolen vehicles exportation and the illegal sale of their parts.

These thefts are part of a wider operation by the international crime group, whose portfolio involves mass fraud, including romance scams, as well as the operation of vehicle theft rings in Ontario and British Columbia, among many other regions of activity.

According to Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada (FINTRAC), Canada’s premier financial intelligence unit, Black Axe is an organized crime syndicate that poses a sophisticated money laundering threat and has infiltrated several levels of government, including Service Ontario.

For a sense of the scale and organization of this network, Canadian authorities disrupted a money-laundering scheme associated with the group in 2017 valued at more than $5 billion. As well, 59 percent of the group’s transactions involved money laundering in auto sales, vehicle parts and the import and export of used vehicles.

According to the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, the Black Axe confraternity were formed in the 1980s, becoming a street cult worshipping Korofo, the unseen god.

They are known for forcibly recruiting new members, employing secretive rituals and symbols and using violence against rival cults and anti-cult campaigners.

Header image of a Black Axe member reproduced under fair use. (BBC News Africa/YouTube)

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