Regulatory offences are not offences under the Criminal Code of Canada, they are offences under various provincial and federal legislations such as:
- The Wildlife Act;
- The Fisheries Act;
- The Motor Vehicle Act;
- The Environmental Management Act;
- Canada Elections Act; and,
- The Liquor Control and Licensing Act;
These legislations are meant to protect the public welfare and unlike offences under the Criminal Code, in prosecuting regulatory offences, the Crown does not need to prove that anyone intended to commit the regulatory offence in question – these are called “strict liability offences”. For example, if you are charged with obstructing a Fisheries officer contrary to s. 129 of the Fisheries Act, the Crown does not have to prove that you intended to obstruct the officer from carrying out their duty, they only need to prove that you obstructed the Fisheries officers in carrying out their duty.
While being convicted of a regulatory offence may not lead to a criminal record, if you are convicted of a regulatory you may be subject to large fines, loss of various licenses and other penalties that could have a negative effect on your life and livelihood (such as the loss of a driving license, a fishing license, or a liquor license).
There are various defences that a practiced lawyer can offer you, such as showing that you exercised your due diligence at the time of the alleged offence. The lawyers at Cote & Evans Trial Lawyers are experienced in dealing with regulatory offences and effectively assist you in defending against regulatory offences. Call us today at 778-395-6200 for a free 30-minute consultation.