Tuesday, August 23, 2016

CBSA in Western Canada urges US travellers to leave handguns at home

Canada Border Services Agency - Today the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) launches a Firearms Awareness campaign in Western Canada, to inform United States (US) travellers about Canadian firearm laws.

Most undeclared firearms seized by the CBSA at land border ports of entry in British Columbia and Alberta are personal firearms belonging to travellers arriving from the US. The CBSA Pacific Region has seen a 116 percent increase in the number of firearms seized in the Pacific Highway District, from January 1, 2016 to July 31, 2016, compared to the same period last year. The CBSA Prairie Region has seen a 10 percent increase in the number of firearms seized in southern Alberta, from January 1, 2016 to July 31, 2016, compared to the same period last year.

Firearms are high-risk commodities and their interdiction is an enforcement priority. Canadian firearms laws are clear. American travellers who do not declare firearms upon arrival can face seizure, criminal prosecution and deportation from Canada. All firearms must be declared.

“Firearms and weapons are high-risk commodities and their interdiction is a CBSA enforcement priority. The CBSA is Canada’s 2nd largest federal law enforcement agency and our officers are Canada's first line of defence in protecting Canada from illegal weapons and other contraband.” - Roslyn H. MacVicar, Regional Director General, Pacific Region, CBSA

“Attempting to smuggle firearms across the border can result in immediate forfeiture, hefty fines, and even significant jail time. The CBSA strives to make visitors’ border-crossing experience as smooth as possible, and you can help by remembering to leave your handguns at home.” - Kim R. Scoville, Regional Director General, Prairie Region, CBSA

“U.S. Customs and Border Protection is working with our Canadian partners to encourage American travellers to not attempt to smuggle firearms into Canada. Travellers are urged to know what they can and can’t bring into the United States or Canada and to properly declare items as required by law.” -  Michele James, Director, Seattle Field Office, U.S. Customs and Border Protection

Quick Facts
  • When travellers arrive at a port of entry, at the Primary Inspection Line (PIL) booth, they should take this first opportunity to declare any firearms in their possession to the CBSA officer to eliminate any risk of penalty or prosecution.
  • At the PIL booth, for security and safety reasons, the border services officer may immediately take possession of the pistol; however the declared gun will not be seized. The traveller will have the option of exporting the firearm under CBSA supervision or abandoning the firearm to the Crown. These options are only available to travellers who declare their firearms.
  • Visitors to Canada cannot, under any circumstances, import prohibited firearms, prohibited devices or prohibited weapons.
Related links:

Import and Export a Firearm or Weapon into Canada

Canadian Firearms Programs: Information and Services for Visitors / Non-Residents

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