Last updated on June 1st, 2021
Section 37 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (the “IRPA“) provides that a permanent resident or foreign national is inadmissible to Canada for organized criminality. It states:
37. (1) A permanent resident or a foreign national is inadmissible on grounds of organized criminality for
(a) being a member of an organization that is believed on reasonable grounds to be or to have been engaged in activity that is part of a pattern of criminal activity planned and organized by a number of persons acting in concert in furtherance of the commission of an offence punishable under an Act of Parliament by way of indictment, or in furtherance of the commission of an offence outside Canada that, if committed in Canada, would constitute such an offence, or engaging in activity that is part of such a pattern; or
(b) engaging, in the context of transnational crime, in activities such as people smuggling, trafficking in persons or laundering of money or other proceeds of crime.
(2) Paragraph (1)(a) does not lead to a determination of inadmissibility by reason only of the fact that the permanent resident or foreign national entered Canada with the assistance of a person who is involved in organized criminal activity.
In Canada (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration) v Thanaratnam, 2005 FCA 122, Canada’s Federal Court of Appeal has confirmed that paragraph 37(1)(a) sets out two “discrete, but overlapping grounds” for inadmissibility. The first is “membership” in an organization believed on reasonable grounds to be or to have been engaged in organized criminal activity (i.e., a criminal organization).Read more ›