Calls for Canada to launch a public inquiry into foreign interference have increased after a former RCMP officer was accused of providing intelligence and services to China.
William Majcher, a veteran Mountie with 22 years of service, was accused of using "his knowledge and his extensive network of contacts in Canada to obtain intelligence or services to benefit the People’s Republic of China,” the RCMP's Integrated National Security Enforcement Teams (INSET) unit said in a statement on July 21.
"It is alleged that he contributed to the Chinese government's efforts to identify and intimidate an individual outside the scope of Canadian law."
Mr. Majcher is charged with two counts under the Security of Information Act, including preparatory acts for the benefit of a foreign entity and conspiracy. The arrest came after the INSET launched an investigation into his "suspicious activities" in the fall of 2021.
This arrest has further intensified demands for the federal government to initiate a public inquiry into the growing issue of foreign interference. Over the past year, a series of clandestine operations by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) have been exposed, adding momentum to the calls for an official investigation.
"We need an an open, independent public inquiry—now," Conservative MP Michael Chong wrote on Twitter, citing repeated warnings from the Canadian Security Intelligence Service that foreign interference is a serious national threat.
A number of current and former politicians echoed Mr. Chong's remark in response to the arrest of Mr. Majcher.
"No more messing around. We need an inquiry into Chinese interference in Canada. No more fights about special rapporteurs. A broad inquiry. Now," said Dominic Cardy, an Independent member of the Legislative Assembly in New Brunswick.
"This isn’t partisan. This is about our country, not any party or leader."
Despite media reports citing national intelligence sources accusing Beijing of interference in Canada—including alleged meddling in the past two federal elections, operating secret police stations on Canadian soil, and intimidating Canadian citizens and politicians—the Liberal government has been hesitant to launch a public inquiry.
In March, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau appointed former governor general David Johnston as special rapporteur to look into whether a formal public inquiry was needed to investigate foreign interference. Mr. Johnston stepped down from the role in June after facing waves of criticism for deciding against the action in his first report published in May.
According to Mr. Majcher’s profile on LinkedIn, he served with the RCMP from 1985 to 2007, during which time he held various positions, including involvement in investigations related to drug and financial crimes, according to INSET Insp. David Beaudoin.
According to a 2019 article by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Mr. Majcher was involved in a Chinese operation code-named “Project Dragon.” The operation’s aim is to recover money allegedly siphoned out of the country illegally to places such as Canada, the United States, and Australia, and recover proceeds of crime from China that were transferred out of the country.
In the article, Mr. Majcher referred to himself as a “hired gun,” stating that he assists governments and corporations in reclaiming what rightfully belongs to them. Regarding Project Dragon, he revealed his association with entities that are themselves connected to Chinese policing authorities.
Former Conservative MP Kenny Chiu raised concerns about Mr. Majcher's experience and association with Chinese authorities, as the CCP is known for its global covert operations of forced repatriation. Beijing claimed that its operations such as “Operation Fox Hunt” and “Sky Net” aim to bring its nationals who have committed financial crimes back to China for trial, but reports have shown that Chinese dissidents have also been targeted.
"Retired RCMP officer Bill Majcher has been charged [with] 2 counts under the Security of Information Act. He's allegedly 'contributed to the Chinese [government's] efforts to identify & intimidate an individual outside the scope of Canadian law," Mr. Chiu wrote.
According to a 2022 study published by the Spain-based NGO Safeguard Defenders, the regime touted its success in repatriating at least 230,000 nationals living overseas between April 2021 and July 2022.
"This man is in a lot of trouble—allegedly helping Beijing intimidate someone in Canada outside [Canadian] law—exactly what the Public Inquiry into Chinese interference will be investigating. Looking forward to the announcement of it asap," Margaret McCuaig-Johnston, a senior fellow at the University of Ottawa, wrote on Twitter.
"First, negligent handling of foreign interference in Parliament. Now a retired RCMP officer helping the CCP regime track targets," she wrote on her Facebook page. "We need a public inquiry ASAP to get the ball rolling to restore accountability and the integrity of public safety and security in our country!"
Ms. Shin noted that there is a silver lining in that the RCMP is "catching one of their own bad guys instead of covering up."
"While, unfortunately, there's no Batman in real life to rescue Gotham, we do have democratic tools to start the cleanup. And people have the choice to exercise moral courage to do the right thing to contribute to the restoration of our systems."
Investigations into Mr. Majcher's case are currently carried out by the RCMP's Quebec "C" Division. Insp. Beaudoin told The Epoch Times that considering Mr. Majcher's extensive network in British Columbia, this arrangement was to ensure that there would be "no interference from connections or previous link with his employment in the area."
David Mulroney, Canada's former ambassador to China, also raised this concern, sharing on social media a quote from Insp. Beaudoin to The Globe and Mail that Mr. Majcher "contributed to the Chinese government’s effort to identify and intimidate an individual."