Tuesday, 5 November 2013

THE CURIOUS CASE OF TAXI DRIVER JIM NEBONE


The MacLauchlan Murders case drew in a number of other people either through happenstance or proximity. In the latter class were neighbours of Dr Robert Henry and Margaret Anne “Nan” MacLauchlan, which included three police officers -- Deputy Chief Peter Meehan, Detective Doug Mercier and Constable Jack Usher. Commenting on the case a few days after the crime, Meehan stated:

“It is a matter of speculation, but we cannot help but relate these deaths to the circumstances of their original arrest [for narcotics trafficking on December 22, 1965].”

The speculation he was referring to was that MacLauchlan and Nan had asked their superiors in the drug ring for help in order to jump bail and avoid their scheduled County Court trial scheduled for May 25, 1966. Meehan felt that the reply to the request had been death. The implication was that the top echelon of Vancouver’s drug world was afraid that the two, once on the stand, would each sing like the proverbial canary.

Among the former class are curious bit players. In this group can certainly be included Jim Nebone, the 21 yr old Royal City Taxi driver who delivered a dozen red carnations to the front door of the MacLauchlans from florist E.H. Stride of 732 12th Street. By the time the delivery was made, the couple had been dead for some hours. It was said at the time that a dozen red carnations was a Mafia calling card.

Without attributing any unsavory associations to Mr Nebone, it has never been clear how those flowers were paid for and by whom. Many years later this same James Nebone operated an illegal zoo in Surrey, which was shut down by the GVRD and the SPCA. We are eager to contact Mr. Nebone who seems to have dropped right out of sight, having no listings anywhere that we could find.

We know that the zoo case happened a long time ago (1989) but we are wondering (and hoping) if any of our readers have any idea at all as to Mr. Nebone's present whereabouts. Information gained from a Vancouver Sun reporter who covered the zoo story in the late 1980s and early 1990s indicates that Mr. Nebone was rather sickly at the time. We are wondering if he died but cannot find any trace of an obituary.
Please contact us via this website if you have even the foggiest idea of where Mr. Nebone has disappeared to.

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