RCMP investigating two alleged clandestine Chinese police stations in Quebec


Quebec RCMP say they are investigating two alleged secret police stations operated by Chinese authorities in the province.

The federal police force confirmed Thursday its Integrated National Security Team has opened investigations into the suspected police stations in Montreal and Brossard, a suburb just south of the city.

Sgt. Charles Poirier says Canadians of Chinese origin were victims of activities carried out by the stations, adding that any type of intimidation, harassment or targeting of diaspora communities will not be tolerated.

Poirier says the RCMP are carrying out actions aimed at detecting and disrupting “foreign state-backed criminal activities,” which may threaten the safety of persons living in Canada.

The RCMP said they could not provide further details due to ongoing investigations, first reported Thursday by the Journal de Montréal.

The Mounties have created a phone line to report any threats in Quebec. 

“The RCMP recognizes that Canadians of Chinese origin have been victims of the possible activities conducted by these centres,” Poirier said. “It is important to support communities that may be affected by these activities.”

The Spanish human rights organization Safeguard Defenders said in a report last September that there were Chinese police operations around the world, including three in Toronto.

It later identified two more, including one in Vancouver and a second unknown Canadian location and said in December there were more than 100 such stations in more than 50 countries.

The group says the stations serve to “persuade” people who Chinese authorities claim are fugitives living overseas to return to China to face charges.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said the presence of Chinese police stations in Canada “concerns us enormously,” adding that it underlines how the primary targets of foreign interference are diasporas living in Canada.

“We’ve known about the (presence of) Chinese police stations across the country for many months, and we are making sure that the RCMP is following up on it and that our intelligence services take it seriously,” Trudeau told reporters in Ottawa.