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Customs Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. 1 (2nd Supp.))

Full Document:  

Act current to 2024-02-06 and last amended on 2022-10-01. Previous Versions

PART VIEnforcement (continued)

Evidence (continued)

Marginal note:Members of partnerships

  •  (1) For the purposes of this Act,

    • (a) a reference in any notice or other document to the firm name of a partnership is to be read as a reference to all the members of the partnership; and

    • (b) any notice or other document is deemed to have been provided to each member of a partnership if the notice or other document is mailed to, served on or otherwise sent to the partnership

      • (i) at its latest known address or place of business, or

      • (ii) at the latest known address

        • (A) if it is a limited partnership, of any member of the limited partnership whose liability as a member is not limited, or

        • (B) in any other case, of any member of the partnership.

  • Marginal note:Members of unincorporated bodies

    (2) For the purposes of this Act,

    • (a) a reference in any notice or other document to the firm name of an unincorporated body is to be read as a reference to all the members of the body; and

    • (b) any notice or other document is deemed to have been provided to each member of an unincorporated body if the notice or other document is mailed to, served on or otherwise sent to the body at its latest known address or place of business.

  • 2001, c. 25, s. 79

Marginal note:Date of notice by mail

 For the purposes of this Act, the date on which a notice is given pursuant to this Act or the regulations shall, where it is given by mail, be deemed to be the date of mailing of the notice, and the date of mailing shall, in the absence of any evidence to the contrary, be deemed to be the day appearing from such notice to be the date thereof unless called into question by the Minister or by some person acting for him or Her Majesty.

Marginal note:Proof of no appeal

 An affidavit of an officer, sworn before a commissioner or other person authorized to take affidavits, setting out that the officer has charge of the appropriate records and has knowledge of the practice of the Agency or the Canada Revenue Agency, as the case may be, and that an examination of the records shows that a notice of assessment under Part V.1 was mailed or otherwise sent to a person under this Act and that, after careful examination and search of the records, the officer has been unable to find that a notice of objection or of appeal from the assessment was received within the time allowed for the notice, is evidence of the statements contained in the affidavit.

  • 2001, c. 25, s. 80
  • 2005, c. 38, s. 82
  • 2009, c. 10, s. 15(F)

Marginal note:Objection or appeal

 If a person who is required under this Act to keep records serves a notice of objection or is a party to an appeal or reference under Part V.1, the person shall retain, until the objection, appeal or reference and any appeal from it is finally disposed of, every record that pertains to the subject-matter of the objection, appeal or reference.

  • 2001, c. 25, s. 80

Marginal note:Copies of documents

 Copies of documents made pursuant to this or any other Act of Parliament that prohibits, controls or regulates the importation or exportation of goods or pursuant to any regulation made thereunder that are duly certified by an officer are admissible in evidence in any proceeding taken pursuant to this Act in the same manner as if they were the originals of such documents.

Marginal note:False information in documents

 In any proceeding taken pursuant to this Act, the production or the proof of the existence of more than one document made or sent by or on behalf of the same person in which the same goods are mentioned as bearing different prices or given different names or descriptions is, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, proof that any such document was intended to be used to evade compliance with this Act or the payment of duties under this Act.

Marginal note:Burden of proof of importation or exportation on Her Majesty

  •  (1) In any proceeding under this Act relating to the importation or exportation of goods, the burden of proof of the importation or exportation of the goods lies on Her Majesty.

  • Marginal note:Proof of importation

    (2) For the purpose of subsection (1), proof of the foreign origin of goods is, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, proof of the importation of the goods.

  • Marginal note:Burden of proof on other party

    (3) Subject to subsection (4), in any proceeding under this Act, the burden of proof in any question relating to

    • (a) the identity or origin of any goods,

    • (b) the manner, time or place of importation or exportation of any goods,

    • (c) the payment of duties on any goods, or

    • (d) the compliance with any of the provisions of this Act or the regulations in respect of any goods

    lies on the person, other than Her Majesty, who is a party to the proceeding or the person who is accused of an offence, and not on Her Majesty.

  • Marginal note:Exception in case of prosecution

    (4) In any prosecution under this Act, the burden of proof in any question relating to the matters referred to in paragraphs (3)(a) to (d) lies on the person who is accused of an offence, and not on Her Majesty, only if the Crown has established that the facts or circumstances concerned are within the knowledge of the accused or are or were within his means to know.

Prohibitions, Offences and Punishment

General

Marginal note:False statements, evasion of duties

 No person shall

  • (a) make, or participate in, assent to or acquiesce in the making of, false or deceptive statements in a statement or answer made orally or in writing pursuant to this Act or the regulations;

  • (a.1) make, or participate in, assent to or acquiesce in the making of, false or deceptive statements in an application for an advance ruling under section 43.1 or a certificate referred to in section 97.1;

  • (b) to avoid compliance with this Act or the regulations,

    • (i) destroy, alter, mutilate, secrete or dispose of records or books of account,

    • (ii) make, or participate in, assent to or acquiesce in the making of, false or deceptive entries in records or books of account, or

    • (iii) omit, or participate in, assent to or acquiesce in the omission of, a material particular from records or books of account; or

  • (c) wilfully, in any manner, evade or attempt to evade compliance with any provision of this Act or evade or attempt to evade the payment of duties under this Act.

  • R.S., 1985, c. 1 (2nd Supp.), s. 153
  • 1988, c. 65, s. 80
  • 1993, c. 44, s. 105
  • 1996, c. 33, s. 39
  • 1997, c. 14, s. 46

Marginal note:Hindering an officer

 No person shall, physically or otherwise, do or attempt to do any of the following:

  • (a) interfere with or molest an officer doing anything that the officer is authorized to do under this Act; or

  • (b) hinder or prevent an officer from doing anything that the officer is authorized to do under this Act.

  • 2001, c. 17, s. 255

Marginal note:Misdescription of goods in accounting documents

 No person shall include in any document used for the purpose of accounting under section 32 a description of goods that does not correspond with the goods so described.

Marginal note:Keeping, acquiring, disposing of goods illegally imported

 No person shall, without lawful authority or excuse, the proof of which lies on him, have in his possession, purchase, sell, exchange or otherwise acquire or dispose of any imported goods in respect of which the provisions of this or any other Act of Parliament that prohibits, controls or regulates the importation of goods have been contravened.

Marginal note:Possession of blank documents

 No person shall, without lawful authority or excuse, the proof of which lies on him, send or bring into Canada or have in his possession any form, document or other writing that is wholly or partly blank and is capable of being completed and used in accounting for imported goods pursuant to this Act, where the form, document or other writing bears any certificate, signature or other mark that is intended to show that such form, document or writing is correct or authentic.

Marginal note:Opening and unpacking goods; breaking seals

 No person shall, without lawful authority or excuse, the proof of which lies on him,

  • (a) open or unpack, or cause to be opened or unpacked, any package of imported goods that has not been released; or

  • (b) break or tamper with, or cause to be broken or tampered with, any seals, locks or fastenings that have been placed on goods, conveyances, bonded warehouses or duty free shops pursuant to this Act or the regulations.

Marginal note:Officers, etc., of corporations

 Where a corporation commits an offence under this Act, any officer, director or agent of the corporation who directed, authorized, assented to, acquiesced in or participated in the commission of the offence is a party to and guilty of the offence and is liable on conviction to the punishment provided for the offence whether or not the corporation has been prosecuted or convicted.

Marginal note:Smuggling — into Canada

  •  (1) Every person commits an offence who smuggles or attempts to smuggle into Canada, whether clandestinely or not, any goods that are subject to duties, or any goods the importation of which is prohibited, controlled or regulated under this or any other Act of Parliament.

  • Marginal note:Smuggling — out of Canada

    (2) Every person commits an offence who smuggles or attempts to smuggle out of Canada, whether clandestinely or not, any goods that are subject to duties, or any goods the exportation of which is prohibited, controlled or regulated under this or any other Act of Parliament.

Marginal note:Offences re marking of goods

 No person shall

  • (a) fail to mark imported goods in the manner referred to in section 35.01;

  • (b) mark imported goods in a deceptive manner so as to mislead another person as to the country of origin or geographic origin of the goods; or

  • (c) with intent to conceal the information given by or contained in the mark, alter, deface, remove or destroy a mark on imported goods made as required by the regulations made under subsection 19(2) of the Customs Tariff.

  • 1993, c. 44, s. 106
  • 1997, c. 36, s. 191
  • 2001, c. 25, s. 81

Marginal note:General offence and punishment

  •  (1) Every person who contravenes section 11, 12, 13, 15 or 16, subsection 20(1), section 31 or 40, subsection 43(2), section 94, subsection 95(1) or (3), 103(3) or 107(2) or section 153, 155, 156 or 159.1 or commits an offence under subsection 159(1) or (2) or knowingly contravenes an order referred to in subsection 107(11)

    • (a) is guilty of an offence punishable on summary conviction and liable to a fine of not more than fifty thousand dollars or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months or to both that fine and that imprisonment; or

    • (b) is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to a fine of not more than five hundred thousand dollars or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years or to both that fine and that imprisonment.

  • Marginal note:Court order — subsection 43(2)

    (2) If a person has been convicted by a court of an offence under subsection (1) for a contravention of subsection 43(2), the court may make any order that it considers appropriate in order to enforce compliance with that subsection.

  • R.S., 1985, c. 1 (2nd Supp.), s. 160
  • 1993, c. 25, s. 88, c. 44, s. 107
  • 2001, c. 25, s. 82
  • 2018, c. 30, s. 8

Marginal note:Penalty for hindering an officer

 Every person who contravenes section 153.1 is guilty of an offence and, in addition to any penalty otherwise provided, is liable on summary conviction to

  • (a) a fine of not less than $1,000 and not more than $25,000; or

  • (b) both a fine described in paragraph (a) and imprisonment for a term not exceeding twelve months.

  • 2001, c. 17, s. 256

Marginal note:Summary conviction offence and punishment

 Every person who contravenes any of the provisions of this Act not otherwise provided for in section 160 is guilty of an offence punishable on summary conviction and liable to a fine of not more than twenty-five thousand dollars and not less than one thousand dollars or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months or to both fine and imprisonment.

  • R.S., 1985, c. 1 (2nd Supp.), s. 161
  • 2001, c. 25, s. 83

Procedure

Marginal note:Venue

 A prosecution for an offence under this Act may be instituted, heard, tried or determined in the place in which the offence was committed or in which the subject-matter of the prosecution arose or in any place in which the accused is apprehended or happens to be.

Marginal note:Limitation period in summary convictions

 Proceedings may be instituted by way of summary conviction in respect of offences under this Act at any time within but not later than three years after the time when the subject-matter of the proceedings arose.

 [Repealed, 2001, c. 32, s. 62]

PART VI.1Enforcement of Criminal Offences Other than Offences Under This Act

Powers of Designated Officers

Marginal note:Designation by President

  •  (1) The President may designate any officer for the purposes of this Part and shall provide the officer with a certificate of designation.

  • Marginal note:Admissibility of certificate

    (2) A certificate of designation is admissible in evidence as proof of an officer’s designation without proof of the signature or official character of the person appearing to have signed it.

  • 1998, c. 7, s. 1
  • 2005, c. 38, s. 83

Marginal note:Powers of designated officers

  •  (1) In addition to the powers conferred on an officer for the enforcement of this Act, a designated officer who is at a customs office and is performing the normal duties of an officer or is acting in accordance with section 99.1 has, in relation to a criminal offence under any other Act of Parliament, the powers and obligations of a peace officer under sections 495 and 497 and paragraphs 498(1)(a) and (b) of the Criminal Code, and subsections 495(3) and 498(3) of that Act apply to the designated officer as if they were a peace officer.

  • Marginal note:Powers relating to impaired driving offences

    (2) A designated officer who is at a customs office performing the normal duties of an officer or is acting in accordance with section 99.1 has the powers and obligations of a peace officer under sections 320.27 to 320.29 of the Criminal Code. If, by demand, they require a person to provide samples of blood or breath or to submit to an evaluation, they may also require the person to accompany a peace officer referred to in paragraph (c) of the definition peace officer in section 2 of that Act, for that purpose.

  • Marginal note:Power to detain

    (3) A designated officer who arrests a person in the exercise of the powers conferred under subsection (1) may detain the person until the person can be placed in the custody of a peace officer referred to in paragraph (c) of the definition peace officer in section 2 of the Criminal Code.

  • Marginal note:Limitation on powers

    (4) A designated officer may not use any power conferred on the officer for the enforcement of this Act for the sole purpose of looking for evidence of a criminal offence under any other Act of Parliament.

  • 1998, c. 7, s. 1
  • 2001, c. 25, s. 84
  • 2008, c. 6, s. 59
  • 2018, c. 21, ss. 11, 45
  • 2019, c. 25, s. 392
 

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