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Criminal Code (R.S.C., 1985, c. C-46)

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Act current to 2021-06-28 and last amended on 2021-05-06. Previous Versions

PART XXIIISentencing (continued)

Eligibility for Parole

Marginal note:Power of court to delay parole

  •  (1) Notwithstanding subsection 120(1) of the Corrections and Conditional Release Act, where an offender receives, on or after November 1, 1992, a sentence of imprisonment of two years or more, including a sentence of imprisonment for life imposed otherwise than as a minimum punishment, on conviction for an offence set out in Schedule I or II to that Act that was prosecuted by way of indictment, the court may, if satisfied, having regard to the circumstances of the commission of the offence and the character and circumstances of the offender, that the expression of society’s denunciation of the offence or the objective of specific or general deterrence so requires, order that the portion of the sentence that must be served before the offender may be released on full parole is one half of the sentence or ten years, whichever is less.

  • Marginal note:Power of court to delay parole

    (1.1) Notwithstanding section 120 of the Corrections and Conditional Release Act, where an offender receives a sentence of imprisonment of two years or more, including a sentence of imprisonment for life imposed otherwise than as a minimum punishment, on conviction for a criminal organization offence other than an offence under section 467.11, 467.111, 467.12 or 467.13, the court may order that the portion of the sentence that must be served before the offender may be released on full parole is one half of the sentence or ten years, whichever is less.

  • Marginal note:Power of court to delay parole

    (1.2) Notwithstanding section 120 of the Corrections and Conditional Release Act, where an offender receives a sentence of imprisonment of two years or more, including a sentence of imprisonment for life, on conviction for a terrorism offence or an offence under section 467.11, 467.111, 467.12 or 467.13, the court shall order that the portion of the sentence that must be served before the offender may be released on full parole is one half of the sentence or ten years, whichever is less, unless the court is satisfied, having regard to the circumstances of the commission of the offence and the character and circumstances of the offender, that the expression of society’s denunciation of the offence and the objectives of specific and general deterrence would be adequately served by a period of parole ineligibility determined in accordance with the Corrections and Conditional Release Act.

  • Marginal note:Principles that are to guide the court

    (2) For greater certainty, the paramount principles which are to guide the court under this section are denunciation and specific or general deterrence, with rehabilitation of the offender, in all cases, being subordinate to these paramount principles.

  • 1995, c. 22, s. 6, c. 42, s. 86
  • 1997, c. 23, s. 18
  • 2001, c. 32, s. 45, c. 41, ss. 21, 133
  • 2014, c. 17, ss. 15, 16

Delivery of Offender to Keeper of Prison

Marginal note:Execution of warrant of committal

 A peace officer or other person to whom a warrant of committal authorized by this or any other Act of Parliament is directed shall arrest the person named or described therein, if it is necessary to do so in order to take that person into custody, convey that person to the prison mentioned in the warrant and deliver that person, together with the warrant, to the keeper of the prison who shall thereupon give to the peace officer or other person who delivers the prisoner a receipt in Form 43 setting out the state and condition of the prisoner when delivered into custody.

  • R.S., 1985, c. C-46, s. 744
  • R.S., 1985, c. 27 (1st Supp.), s. 166, c. 1 (4th Supp.), s. 18(F)
  • 1992, c. 11, s. 16
  • 1995, c. 22, s. 6

Imprisonment for Life

Marginal note:Sentence of life imprisonment

 Subject to section 745.1, the sentence to be pronounced against a person who is to be sentenced to imprisonment for life shall be

  • (a) in respect of a person who has been convicted of high treason or first degree murder, that the person be sentenced to imprisonment for life without eligibility for parole until the person has served twenty-five years of the sentence;

  • (b) in respect of a person who has been convicted of second degree murder where that person has previously been convicted of culpable homicide that is murder, however described in this Act, that that person be sentenced to imprisonment for life without eligibility for parole until the person has served twenty-five years of the sentence;

  • (b.1) in respect of a person who has been convicted of second degree murder where that person has previously been convicted of an offence under section 4 or 6 of the Crimes Against Humanity and War Crimes Act that had as its basis an intentional killing, whether or not it was planned and deliberate, that that person be sentenced to imprisonment for life without eligibility for parole until the person has served twenty-five years of the sentence;

  • (c) in respect of a person who has been convicted of second degree murder, that the person be sentenced to imprisonment for life without eligibility for parole until the person has served at least ten years of the sentence or such greater number of years, not being more than twenty-five years, as has been substituted therefor pursuant to section 745.4; and

  • (d) in respect of a person who has been convicted of any other offence, that the person be sentenced to imprisonment for life with normal eligibility for parole.

  • R.S., 1985, c. C-46, s. 745
  • R.S., 1985, c. 27 (2nd Supp.), s. 10
  • 1990, c. 17, s. 14
  • 1992, c. 51, s. 39
  • 1995, c. 22, s. 6
  • 2000, c. 24, s. 46

Marginal note:Information in respect of parole

  •  (1) Except where subsection 745.6(2) applies, at the time of sentencing under paragraph 745(a), (b) or (c), the judge who presided at the trial of the offender shall state the following, for the record:

    The offender has been found guilty of (state offence) and sentenced to imprisonment for life. The offender is not eligible for parole until (state date). However, after serving at least 15 years of the sentence, the offender may apply under section 745.6 of the Criminal Code for a reduction in the number of years of imprisonment without eligibility for parole. If the jury hearing the application reduces the period of parole ineligibility, the offender may then make an application for parole under the Corrections and Conditional Release Act at the end of that reduced period.

  • Marginal note:Exception

    (2) Subsection (1) does not apply if the offender is convicted of an offence committed on or after the day on which this subsection comes into force.

  • 1999, c. 25, s. 21(Preamble)
  • 2011, c. 2, s. 2

Marginal note:Persons under eighteen

 The sentence to be pronounced against a person who was under the age of eighteen at the time of the commission of the offence for which the person was convicted of first degree murder or second degree murder and who is to be sentenced to imprisonment for life shall be that the person be sentenced to imprisonment for life without eligibility for parole until the person has served

  • (a) such period between five and seven years of the sentence as is specified by the judge presiding at the trial, or if no period is specified by the judge presiding at the trial, five years, in the case of a person who was under the age of sixteen at the time of the commission of the offence;

  • (b) ten years, in the case of a person convicted of first degree murder who was sixteen or seventeen years of age at the time of the commission of the offence; and

  • (c) seven years, in the case of a person convicted of second degree murder who was sixteen or seventeen years of age at the time of the commission of the offence.

  • 1995, c. 22, ss. 6, 21

Marginal note:Recommendation by jury

 Subject to section 745.3, where a jury finds an accused guilty of second degree murder, the judge presiding at the trial shall, before discharging the jury, put to them the following question:

You have found the accused guilty of second degree murder and the law requires that I now pronounce a sentence of imprisonment for life against the accused. Do you wish to make any recommendation with respect to the number of years that the accused must serve before the accused is eligible for release on parole? You are not required to make any recommendation but if you do, your recommendation will be considered by me when I am determining whether I should substitute for the ten year period, which the law would otherwise require the accused to serve before the accused is eligible to be considered for release on parole, a number of years that is more than ten but not more than twenty-five.

  • 1995, c. 22, s. 6

Marginal note:Recommendation by jury — multiple murders

  •  (1) Where a jury finds an accused guilty of murder and that accused has previously been convicted of murder, the judge presiding at the trial shall, before discharging the jury, put to them the following question:

    You have found the accused guilty of murder. The law requires that I now pronounce a sentence of imprisonment for life against the accused. Do you wish to make any recommendation with respect to the period without eligibility for parole to be served for this murder consecutively to the period without eligibility for parole imposed for the previous murder? You are not required to make any recommendation, but if you do, your recommendation will be considered by me when I make my determination.

  • Marginal note:Application

    (2) Subsection (1) applies to an offender who is convicted of murders committed on a day after the day on which this section comes into force and for which the offender is sentenced under this Act, the National Defence Act or the Crimes Against Humanity and War Crimes Act.

  • 2011, c. 5, s. 4

Marginal note:Persons under sixteen

 Where a jury finds an accused guilty of first degree murder or second degree murder and the accused was under the age of sixteen at the time of the commission of the offence, the judge presiding at the trial shall, before discharging the jury, put to them the following question:

You have found the accused guilty of first degree murder (or second degree murder) and the law requires that I now pronounce a sentence of imprisonment for life against the accused. Do you wish to make any recommendation with respect to the period of imprisonment that the accused must serve before the accused is eligible for release on parole? You are not required to make any recommendation but if you do, your recommendation will be considered by me when I am determining the period of imprisonment that is between five years and seven years that the law would require the accused to serve before the accused is eligible to be considered for release on parole.

  • 1995, c. 22, ss. 6, 22
 
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