Tories take aim at prisoner transfers

OTTAWA — The Harper government introduced legislation Thursday to make it tougher for Canadians imprisoned abroad to serve out their sentences in Canada.

OTTAWA — The Harper government introduced legislation Thursday to make it tougher for Canadians imprisoned abroad to serve out their sentences in Canada.

The bill would expand the conditions prisoners must meet before being allowed to obtain transfers to Canadian jails.

Among other things, they would have to satisfy the government that they pose no threat to public safety, that they’ve taken part in rehabilitation programs, have co-operated with law-enforcement agencies and accepted responsibility for their crimes.

Public Safety Minister Peter Van Loan said the current law on transfers is tilted toward the right of criminals to return home. He said recent court rulings have made it difficult to block transfers except in cases where prisoners are deemed a threat to national security.

“Right now, the law emphasizes the interests of the criminal,” Van Loan said.

“We are rebalancing that law to take into account the interests of Canadian society.”

The proposed changes would expand the criteria that must be considered by the public safety minister in deciding whether to grant a transfer back to Canada. The new criteria would include whether a prisoner’s return could endanger public safety or threaten the safety and security of victims, family members or children.

“I believe there are sexual offenders or murderers or other types of offenders (who) could represent such a threat. It’s a case-by-case evaluation that is needed,” Van Loan said.

He did not explain how a transferred prisoner put behind bars in Canada would be a threat to public safety.

Van Loan said there are currently 241 applications for transfers from Canadians incarcerated abroad.

Just Posted

Red Deer group looking to keep roads safe for cyclists

A Red Deer cycling group is concerned about road safety after multiple… Continue reading

Smoke and pets do not mix

Take care of your pets during the smoky weather

Former Red Deer lawyer sentenced

Charges included possession of stolen property

WATCH: Raising money for kids at the Gord Bamford Charity Golf Classic

Former NHL players, Olympians, pro rodeo circuit members and musicians teed off… Continue reading

Canadian soccer captain Christine Sinclair continues to lead fight against MS

TORONTO — Christine Sinclair continues to have an impact on and off… Continue reading

In Franklin’s anthems, women heard an empowering message

NEW YORK — Aretha Franklin never saw herself as a feminist heroine.… Continue reading

Happy birthday Boler: 100s of cute campers in Winnipeg for anniversary gathering

WINNIPEG — Angela Durand sits outside her camper which is decorated to… Continue reading

Merkel, Putin share a headache: Donald Trump

FRANKFURT — German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Russia’s President Vladimir Putin will… Continue reading

Tim Hortons says its China expansion will include menu with congee, matcha

TORONTO — The president of Tim Hortons says a plan to conquer… Continue reading

Trump suggests Canada has been sidelined from latest NAFTA negotiations

OTTAWA — U.S. President Donald Trump is suggesting Canada has deliberately been… Continue reading

Photographer files complaint with police after alleged assault while on the job

TORONTO — A Toronto newspaper photographer said he opted to file a… Continue reading

Annual inflation rate jumped to 3.0% in July, highest reading since 2011

OTTAWA — Statistics Canada says higher gasoline prices helped push the country’s… Continue reading

Most Read

Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month