Criminal Section Minutes 2007

2006-2007 Other Bills of Interest

Private Members’ Bills (House of Commons)

Delegates to the Criminal Section may be particularly interested in the criminal law reforms proposed by Private Members’ bills. For example, Bill C-277, which has received Royal Assent, increases the sentences for luring. This issue was the subject of a ULCC resolution in 2006. The Parliament of Canada website (http://www.parl.gc.ca) should be consulted for the full list and text of Private Members’ bills. Some of the bills of interest to ULCC are described briefly below. Note that the description below refers to the status of bills as of September 4, 2007.

Bill C-277 An Act to amend the Criminal Code (luring a child) Mr. Fast (Abbotsford) was introduced in the House of Commons on May 12, 2006 and received Royal Assent on June 22, 2007 as S.C. 2007, c. 20. It amends the Criminal Code to increase the maximum penalties for section 172.1 (luring a child) from 6 to 18 months imprisonment on summary conviction and from 5 to 10 years imprisonment on indictment.

Bill C-299 An Act to amend the Criminal Code, the Canada Evidence Act and the Competition Act (personal information obtained by fraud) – Mr. Rajotte (Edmonton-Leduc) was introduced on May 17, 2006. It proposes to amend the Criminal Code to create the following criminal offences:

(a) obtaining personal information from a third party by a false pretence or by fraud;

(b) counselling a person to obtain personal information from a third party by a false pretence or by fraud; and

(c) selling or otherwise disclosing personal information obtained from a third party by a false pretence or by fraud.

Bill C-299 would make other amendments, including to the Canada Evidence Act and the

Competition Act.

Bill C-299 received First Reading in the Senate on May 9, 2007.

Bill C-343 An Act to amend the Criminal Code (motor vehicle theft) – Mr. Scheer (Regina-Qu'Appelle) received First Reading on June 22, 2006. This Bill proposes to create a separate offence of motor vehicle theft with escalating penalties, including mandatory minimum penalties (MMPs):

1st offence: MMP of 3 months imprisonment and/or fine of $1000 and maximum of

2 years imprisonment on summary conviction or 5 years on indictment;

2nd offence: MMP of 6 months imprisonment and/or fine of $5000 and maximum of

2 years imprisonment on summary conviction or 5 years on indictment; and

3rd offence: MMP of 2 years imprisonment and fine of $10,000 and maximum of 10

years imprisonment.

This Bill was referred to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights on May 2, 2007.

Bill C-376 An Act to amend the Criminal Code (impaired driving) and to make consequential amendments to other Acts – Mr. Cannan (Kelowna-Lake Country) received First Reading on October 31, 2006. Bill C-376 proposes to create a new drinking and driving offence of operating, or having the care or control of, a vehicle while having a concentration of 50 milligrams or more of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood. It also makes related amendments to the Criminal Records Act and the Identification of Criminals Act.

Bill C-376 is currently at Second Reading stage in the House of Commons.

Bill C-423 An Act to amend the Youth Criminal Justice Act (treatment for substance abuse) Mr. Lake (Edmonton-Mill Woods-Beaumont) received First Reading on April 16, 2007. Bill C-423 proposes to amend the Youth Criminal Justice Act (YCJA) to require that a police officer must, before starting judicial proceedings or taking any other measures under the YCJA against a young person alleged to have committed an offence, consider whether it would be sufficient to refer the young person to an addiction specialist for assessment and, if warranted, treatment recommendations. If the young person enters into a treatment program as a result of such a referral and fails to complete the program, the outcome may be the start of judicial proceedings against that young person.

This Bill reached Second Reading in the House of Commons on June 5, 2007.

Bill C-426 An Act to amend the Canada Evidence Act (protection of journalistic sources and search warrants) Mr. Ménard (Marc-Aurèle-Fortin) received First Reading in the House of Commons on April 17, 2007. The Bill is intended to protect the confidentiality of journalistic sources. It allows journalists to refuse to disclose information or a record that has not been published unless it is of vital importance and cannot be produced in evidence by any other means. It establishes specific conditions that must be met for a judge to issue a search warrant to obtain information or records that a journalist possesses.

Bill C-426 reached Second Reading stage in the House of Commons on May 15, 2007.

Bill C-428 An Act to amend the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act (methamphetamine)

Mr Warkentin (Peace River) was introduced in the House of Commons on April 19, 2007. This Bill proposes to prohibit the production, possession and sale of any substance, equipment or other material that is intended for use in production of or trafficking in methamphetamine.

Bill C-428 passed Second Reading in the House of Commons and was referred to the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights on June 14, 2007.

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