Weapons and firearms offences are extremely serious violations of the Canadian Criminal Code, and can result in a variety of sentences if a conviction is obtained. In some cases, these sentences can include imprisonment for up to 10 years, especially when the original offence is combined with other charges. It is extremely important to speak to a lawyer immediately if you are accused of these or any other offences before making any statements to the police.
The laws pertaining to weapons and firearms offences are extremely complex, as there are a large number of subcategories and related offences. These charges require a great deal of specific and contextual legal knowledge to understand and defend against, so the information provided here is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice.
The penalties for firearms and weapons offences vary widely, depending on the circumstances and the particular nature of the offence. They are divided into offences related to possession and offences related to usage, and the penalties for use offences are generally much harsher than possession. Some firearms and weapons offences are assigned mandatory minimum sentences on conviction, which removes the discretion of the court to hand down more lenient sentences under any circumstances.
Aside from possible jail time and other penalties, weapons and firearms convictions can cause significant problems in later life, including the prevention of purchase or possession of legally obtained and registered firearms.
John is a Provincial Director of the Criminal Lawyers Association and a commentator on a number of political issues related to the judiciary in Canada, and has been a vocal opponent of mandatory minimum sentences in many areas of the Criminal Code. If you have been charged with a weapons or firearm-related offence in Toronto or the GTA, contact John immediately at 416.361.9609 to discuss your case.