slain gangster Joe Krantz funds raised for the murdered Independent Soldier's memorial plot

Friends of slain gangster Joe Krantz now say they will not be getting any government money for his burial expenses.Nicole Cooper, who has opened a bank account to fundraise for the murdered Independent Soldier's memorial plot, said in a series of text messages that "social services" is not paying anything.She said only Krantz's friends and family members are chipping in to cover the costs of the stone, plot and engraving for the memorial at Valley View Memorial Garden in Surrey.Last week, Cooper posted to a Krantz Facebook tribute page that she was getting $1,050 from the government to help with the costs and that another $5,000 would be raised from Krantz supporters.Cooper did not return several phone calls earlier this week, but sent a brief text message to counter her earlier comments about the government contribution.Officials in the Ministry of Housing and Social Development refused to comment about any specific application for burial assistance when contacted by The Vancouver Sun.Officials did, however, say that applicants must supply detailed financial information about the dead person's assets, which are independently verified.Krantz was gunned down Oct. 20 at the World Extreme Fighting Club he had operated in Abbotsford for two years. The murder remains unsolved. At the time he owned a 2007 Cadillac Escalade, according to property records.Krantz was arrested last April and charged with nine gun and drug-trafficking charges after a one-month Abbotsford police investigation into an alleged dial-a-dope ring. Police found guns, drugs and cash in his apartment along with clothing bearing the logos of the Independent Soldiers gang, as well as the Hells Angels' Nomad chapter.The 28-year-old, who trained mixed martial arts fighters, was intensely popular, despite his criminal links. At least four online tribute sites were started.A tribute mural was painted at a Langley high school, though it was later taken down by school board officials.

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