Saturday, October 29, 2011

Library of Parliament Legislative Summary of Federal Omnibus Crime Bill

At the beginning of October, the Library of Parliament published a legislative summary of Bill C-10, the federal government's ommibus crime bill that groups together nine separate bills that didn't make it through the last session of Parliament:

"Part 1 of Bill C-10 creates a new Act, the Justice for Victims of Terrorism Act, to introduce a specific cause of action for victims of terrorism, allowing them to sue for loss or damage as a result of actions punishable under the Criminal Code. This part also amends the State Immunity Act to lift state immunity where a state has supported terrorist activities (state immunity being the general rule that prevents other states from being sued in Canada’s domestic courts). However, only states included in a list to be established by the Governor in Council may have their immunity lifted and be sued."

"Part 2 of Bill C-10 amends the Criminal Code to impose new mandatory minimum sentences for certain sexual offences committed against young people as well as to increase existing mandatory penalties. It creates the offences of making sexually explicit material available to a child and of agreeing or arranging to commit a sexual offence against a child. The bill also expands the list of specified conditions that may be added to prohibition and recognizance orders. These conditions would include prohibitions concerning contact with a person under the age of 16 and use of the Internet or other digital network; the list of enumerated offences that may give rise to such orders and prohibitions would also be expanded."

"This part also amends the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act (CDSA) to provide for mandatory minimum sentences of imprisonment for certain drug crimes. Currently, there are no mandatory minimum penalties under the CDSA. The bill contains an exception that would allow courts not to impose a mandatory sentence if an offender successfully completes a Drug Treatment Court program or a treatment program which, as set out in section 720(2) of the Criminal Code, is approved by a province and is under the supervision of a court."

"Finally, Part 2 amends the Criminal Code to restrict the availability of conditional sentences for certain offences. It would eliminate the reference in the conditional sentencing part of the Criminal Code to serious personal injury offences. It would also restrict the availability of conditional sentences for all offences for which the maximum term of imprisonment is 14 years or life and for specified offences, prosecuted by way of indictment, for which the maximum term of imprisonment is 10 years."

"Part 3 amends the Corrections and Conditional Release Act to increase the accountability of federal offenders and tighten the rules governing conditional release, while promoting the interests and the role of victims in the correctional process."

"This part and the schedule to the bill amend the Criminal Records Act to substitute the term 'record suspension' for the term 'pardon.' These amendments extend the ineligibility periods for applications for a record suspension to five years for all summary conviction offences and to 10 years for all indictable offences. They make individuals convicted of sexual offences against minors (with certain exceptions) and those who have been convicted of more than three indictable offences with sentences of two or more years’ imprisonment, ineligible for a record suspension."

"Finally, Part 3 also amends the International Transfer of Offenders Act to ensure that the purpose of the Act specifically refers to public safety, to add new factors to be considered by the Minister of Public Safety in deciding whether to approve the transfer of a Canadian offender back to Canada, and to make the Minister’s consideration of all listed factors discretionary rather than mandatory."

"Part 4 amends the Youth Criminal Justice Act in a number of ways, including to emphasize the importance of protecting society and to facilitate the detention of young persons who reoffend or who pose a threat to public safety."

"Part 5 amends the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act to attempt to preclude situations in which foreign nationals might be exploited or become victims of human trafficking in this country. These amendments give immigration officers discretion to refuse to authorize a foreign national to work in Canada if, in their opinion, the foreign national is at risk of being a victim of exploitation or abuse."

It is possible to follow the progress of the bill in Parliament on the LEGISinfo website.

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posted by Michel-Adrien at 2:46 pm


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