moved for leave to introduce Bill C-292, an act to amend the Criminal Code (selling wildlife).
Madam Speaker, this bill is an attempt to make the killing or capturing of wildlife and wildlife parts an offence under the Criminal Code of Canada.
I want to make it clear that the bill would not apply to acts carried out with a licence, permit or exemption order. The bill is not meant to replace provincial wildlife laws but rather to complement them.
I see the bill as dealing only with the most serious offences in the same manner that the criminal code is used for the most serious driving offences. It has become apparent that provincial laws are not a sufficient deterrent to deal with the multimillion dollar illegal trade in animal parts.
The bill would give provincial wildlife authorities and crown counsel the option to proceed by way of provincial wildlife legislation or the new section of the criminal code. Anyone who is convicted of an offence under this section would be guilty of an indictable offence and subject to a maximum two year sentence for a first offence and three years of incarceration for a subsequent offence. If the animal in question is a threatened or endangered species, the maximum sentence is four years for a first offence and eight years for subsequent offences.
The legislation would include such activity as an enterprise crime so it would be subject to the proceeds of crime section of the code.
It is very important that we make every effort to protect endangered species and animals from the misuse and abuse of hunting and fishing as we know it. People are making extremely large amounts of money by poaching and by illegally killing or capturing species that are sometimes endangered. We need to do more to see that it stops.
(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)