GOVERNMENT INTRODUCES LEGISLATION TO PROTECT CANADIANS
FROM GANGS AND OTHER FORMS OF ORGANIZED CRIME
OTTAWA - The Honourable Rob Nicholson, P.C., Q.C., Member of Parliament for Niagara Falls, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, today introduced new legislation that will fight violence associated with organized crime and gangs.
“No part of our society is immune to the menace of organized crime activities,” said Minister Nicholson. “That is why our Government is moving forward on its justice agenda to address the lethal impact of gangs and organized crime on Canadian families and communities.”
If passed by Parliament, the proposed Act to amend the Criminal Code (organized crime and protection of justice system participants) will:
make murders connected to organized crime activity automatically first-degree. First-degree murder is subject to a mandatory sentence of life imprisonment without eligibility for parole for 25 years;
create a new offence to address drive-by and other reckless shootings. This offence would carry a mandatory minimum sentence of four years in prison, with a maximum of 14 years. The minimum sentence would increase if the offence was committed for a criminal organization or with a prohibited or restricted firearm such as a handgun; and
create two new offences of aggravated assault against a peace or public officer and assault with a weapon on a peace or public officer. These would be punishable by maximum penalties of 14 and 10 years respectively.
“Our Government is committed to targeting gangs and other organized criminal groups that are involved in violent crimes,” said Minister Nicholson. “We will continue to take tough, responsible action to make our streets and communities safer and more secure.”
For an online version of the legislation, visit www.parl.gc.ca.