Department of Justice Canada

Department of Justice Canada

May 01, 2013 12:05 ET

Government of Canada Supports Private Member's Bill Tackling Gang Recruitment

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - May 1, 2013) - The Honourable Rob Nicholson, P.C., Q.C., M.P. for Niagara Falls, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, announced the Government of Canada's continued support for Private Member's Bill C-394 (criminal organization recruitment), sponsored by Parm Gill, M.P. for Brampton-Springdale.

"The Harper Government is committed to keeping our streets and communities safe, which is why we support this Private Member's Bill," said Minister Nicholson. "I applaud my colleague Parm Gill for his determination to protect our youth by disrupting the ability of gangs to recruit new members."

The Bill would create a new Criminal Code offence prohibiting recruiting or encouraging a person to join a criminal organization. The new offence would be punishable by a maximum of five years' imprisonment and carry a mandatory minimum penalty of six months if the person recruited is under the age of 18.

"Parents want gangs off their streets and out of their neighbourhoods," said Mr. Gill. "By tackling organized crime head-on, we are placing the safety of our youth, families, and communities at the forefront of our justice system."

The Government has passed a number of reforms aimed at protecting our children and combating organized crime, including:

  • The Safe Streets and Communities Act, which created mandatory minimum penalties for gang-related drug crimes;

  • The Tackling Violent Crime Act, which included mandatory minimum penalties for serious offences involving firearms and organized crime; and,

  • An Act to amend the Criminal Code (organized crime and protection of justice system participants) that targeted gang murders and drive-by shootings.

The Government's support for the proposed legislation is in keeping with the Government's Plan for Safe Streets and Communities, one of four priorities identified recently by the Prime Minister. This plan focuses on holding violent criminals accountable, enhancing the rights of victims, and increasing the efficiency of our justice system.

Internet: www.justice.gc.ca

(Version française disponible)

Contact Information

  • Julie Di Mambro
    Press Secretary
    Office of the Minister of Justice
    613-992-4621

    Media Relations
    Department of Justice
    613-957-4207