by Kim Bolan/Special to the Langley Advance
UPDATE (Nov. 22 2016)
An alleged United Nations gang killer boasted to two undercover cops that he was B.C.’s most wanted during a secretly recorded conversation in the back of a police vehicle in 2014.
Cory Vallee, who is charged with murder and conspiracy, can be heard on the recording telling the two men that there were so many cops guarding them because he was really high profile.
“Are you f–ing America’s Most Wanted or what?” said one of the cops, after Vallee and the two men were placed in the vehicle at Vancouver International Airport to be transported to the Richmond RCMP detachment. Vallee said he was just “B.C.’s” most wanted. “I have never seen anything like this before,” said the cop.
Said Vallee: “It’s for me. I am not joking… Read the newspaper. Google when you get out tomorrow.”
Some of the recordings, made on Aug. 17, 2014 after Vallee was returned to Canada from Mexico, were played in B.C. Supreme Court Monday for Justice Janice Dillon.
Vallee’s lawyer Tony Paisana is challenging the admissibility of the conversations with the cops, who were posing as two friends from Winnipeg arrested after bringing in $175,000 in undeclared cash from the U.S. One of the undercover officers was then put in a cell with Vallee. The identities of both police officers are shielded by a court order.
Vallee admitted that he had been hiding out in Mexico for years.
“I was on the run,” he said, later adding that he believes someone tipped police to his whereabouts.
One of the cops asked if they were being driven to downtown Vancouver.
Vallee replied that they were headed to the Richmond RCMP detachment.
“You are like the f–ing tour guide of the f–ing jails,” one of the cops said.
Replied Vallee: “Hey man, I know the jails.” Vallee is charged with first-degree murder and conspiracy in relation to a bloody gang war on the Lower Mainland in 2008 and 2009 between the UN Gang and the Bacon brothers and their Red Scorpions associates. He is alleged to have murdered Bacon associate Kevin LeClair on Feb. 6, 2009 in a Langley parking lot after hunting the UN’s enemies for several months.
STORY from Nov. 16:
An alleged United Nations Gang killer was struck by Mexican police and had a bag thrown over his head during his August 2014 arrest in Guadalajara, B.C. Supreme Court heard Wednesday.
Lawyer Tony Paisana, representing accused killer Cory Vallee, asked a lead investigator in the murder case why Vallee agreed to return to Canada within 12 hours of his arrest on Aug. 13, 2014.
“Did that give you cause for concern that be might be being mistreated in Mexico?” Paisana asked RCMP Sgt. Wayne Laviolette.
Laviolette said he presumed that Vallee preferred to be in custody in Canada rather than stay in an overcrowded Mexican jail.
“You are aware that Mr. Vallee told basically everyone he came in contact with that day that he had a bag thrown over his head and that he was hit by police?” Paisana asked.
Laviolette said he knew that Vallee had made that allegation.
“In this particular case, I think Mr. Vallee was treated — from my understanding — appropriately and with extra care,” the Mountie told Justice Janice Dillon.
Vallee is charged with first-degree murder and conspiracy in relation to a bloody gang war that raged in 2008 and 2009 between the UN Gang and the Bacon brothers and their Red Scorpions associates.
He is alleged to have murdered Bacon associate Kevin LeClair on Feb. 6, 2009 in a Langley parking lot after hunting the UN enemies for several months.
The trial began Wednesday with a defence application to exclude conversations Vallee had with an undercover cop placed in a jail cell with him after he was flown back to Canada on Aug. 17, 2014.
Paisana alleges that Vallee’s Charter rights were violated by the “cell plant operation.”
Murder and conspiracy charges were laid against Vallee and several other UN Gang members and associates in January 2011.
But Vallee’s whereabouts were unknown at the time, so police here got Interpol to issue a “Red Notice” for his arrest, Crown prosecutor David Jardine said Wednesday.
Jardine said when Vallee was arrested in Mexico, two RCMP officers flew down to escort him home.
A decision had already been made to use undercover officers posing as two men arrested after returning from the U.S. with $175,000 in undeclared cash.
The three were transported from the airport to the Richmond RCMP detachment, where one of the undercover cops was placed in a cell with Vallee, Jardine said.
Laviolette told Dillon he has worked on the UN murder file since April 2009 and was called in from vacation when Vallee was arrested in Mexico.
He said he spoke to an American agent with Homeland Security who was on the ground in Guadalajara to confirm Vallee’s identity.
Vallee was arrested with a California driver’s licence and a social security card.
The U.S. agent sent an e-mail with a photo of Vallee’s face and his distinctive back tattoo to Laviolette.
A fingerprint check confirmed the man arrested in Mexico was in fact the accused Canadian killer.
Laviolette agreed with Paisana that he was the “quarterback” tasked with co-ordinating police plans for Vallee upon his return to Canada.
He contacted the “UC shop” to arrange for an undercover team, Laviolette said.
As well, other officers were tasked with interviewing Vallee, whom Laviolette said was offered the chance to speak to a lawyer.
The voir dire – or trial within a trial – on the admissibility of Vallee’s statements to the undercover police, is expected to last several more days.
– Kim Bolan is a reporter with the Vancouver Sun.
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