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Criminal Code (R.S.C., 1985, c. C-46)

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Act current to 2022-09-22 and last amended on 2022-06-23. Previous Versions

PART XVSpecial Procedure and Powers (continued)

Forensic DNA Analysis (continued)

Marginal note:Information for impression warrant

  •  (1) A justice may issue a warrant in writing authorizing a peace officer to do any thing, or cause any thing to be done under the direction of the peace officer, described in the warrant in order to obtain any handprint, fingerprint, footprint, foot impression, teeth impression or other print or impression of the body or any part of the body in respect of a person if the justice is satisfied

    • (a) by information on oath in writing that there are reasonable grounds to believe that an offence against this or any other Act of Parliament has been committed and that information concerning the offence will be obtained by the print or impression; and

    • (b) that it is in the best interests of the administration of justice to issue the warrant.

  • Marginal note:Search or seizure to be reasonable

    (2) A warrant issued under subsection (1) shall contain such terms and conditions as the justice considers advisable to ensure that any search or seizure authorized by the warrant is reasonable in the circumstances.

  • Marginal note:Execution in Canada

    (3) A warrant issued under subsection (1) may be executed at any place in Canada. Any peace officer who executes the warrant must have authority to act as a peace officer in the place where it is executed.

  • Marginal note:Telewarrant

    (4) Where a peace officer believes that it would be impracticable to appear personally before a justice to make an application for a warrant under this section, a warrant may be issued under this section on an information submitted by telephone or other means of telecommunication and, for that purpose, section 487.1 applies, with such modifications as the circumstances require, to the warrant.

Other Provisions Respecting Search Warrants, Preservation Orders and Production Orders

Marginal note:Telewarrants

  •  (1) If a peace officer believes that an indictable offence has been committed and that it would be impracticable to appear personally before a justice to make an application for a warrant in accordance with section 487, the peace officer may submit an information on oath by telephone or other means of telecommunication to a justice designated for the purpose by the chief judge of the provincial court having jurisdiction in the matter.

  • Marginal note:Information submitted by telephone

    (2) An information submitted by telephone or other means of telecommunication, other than a means of telecommunication that produces a writing, shall be on oath and shall be recorded verbatim by the justice, who shall, as soon as practicable, cause to be filed, with the clerk of the court for the territorial division in which the warrant is intended for execution, the record or a transcription of it, certified by the justice as to time, date and contents.

  • Marginal note:Information submitted by other means of telecommunication

    (2.1) The justice who receives an information submitted by a means of telecommunication that produces a writing shall, as soon as practicable, cause to be filed, with the clerk of the court for the territorial division in which the warrant is intended for execution, the information certified by the justice as to time and date of receipt.

  • Marginal note:Administration of oath

    (3) For the purposes of subsection (2), an oath may be administered by telephone or other means of telecommunication.

  • Marginal note:Alternative to oath

    (3.1) A peace officer who uses a means of telecommunication referred to in subsection (2.1) may, instead of swearing an oath, make a statement in writing stating that all matters contained in the information are true to his or her knowledge and belief and such a statement is deemed to be a statement made under oath.

  • Marginal note:Contents of information

    (4) An information submitted by telephone or other means of telecommunication shall include

    • (a) a statement of the circumstances that make it impracticable for the peace officer to appear personally before a justice;

    • (b) a statement of the indictable offence alleged, the place or premises to be searched and the items alleged to be liable to seizure;

    • (c) a statement of the peace officer’s grounds for believing that items liable to seizure in respect of the offence alleged will be found in the place or premises to be searched; and

    • (d) a statement as to any prior application for a warrant under this section or any other search warrant, in respect of the same matter, of which the peace officer has knowledge.

  • Marginal note:Issuing warrant

    (5) A justice referred to in subsection (1) may issue a warrant to a peace officer conferring the same authority respecting search and seizure as may be conferred by a warrant issued under subsection 487(1) if the justice is satisfied that an information submitted by telephone or other means of telecommunication

    • (a) is in respect of an indictable offence and conforms to the requirements of subsection (4);

    • (b) discloses reasonable grounds for dispensing with an information presented personally and in writing; and

    • (c) discloses reasonable grounds in accordance with paragraph 487(1)(a), (b) or (c), as the case may be, for the issuance of a warrant in respect of an indictable offence.

    The justice may require that the warrant be executed within the period that he or she may order.

  • Marginal note:Formalities respecting warrant and facsimiles

    (6) Where a justice issues a warrant by telephone or other means of telecommunication, other than a means of telecommunication that produces a writing,

    • (a) the justice shall complete and sign the warrant in Form 5.1, noting on its face the time, date and place of issuance;

    • (b) the peace officer, on the direction of the justice, shall complete, in duplicate, a facsimile of the warrant in Form 5.1, noting on its face the name of the issuing justice and the time, date and place of issuance; and

    • (c) the justice shall, as soon as practicable after the warrant has been issued, cause the warrant to be filed with the clerk of the court for the territorial division in which the warrant is intended for execution.

  • Marginal note:Issuance of warrant where telecommunication produces writing

    (6.1) Where a justice issues a warrant by a means of telecommunication that produces a writing,

    • (a) the justice shall complete and sign the warrant in Form 5.1, noting on its face the time, date and place of issuance;

    • (b) the justice shall transmit the warrant by the means of telecommunication to the peace officer who submitted the information and the copy of the warrant received by the peace officer is deemed to be a facsimile within the meaning of paragraph (6)(b);

    • (c) the peace officer shall procure another facsimile of the warrant; and

    • (d) the justice shall, as soon as practicable after the warrant has been issued, cause the warrant to be filed with the clerk of the court for the territorial division in which the warrant is intended for execution.

  • Marginal note:Providing facsimile

    (7) A peace officer who executes a warrant issued by telephone or other means of telecommunication shall, before or as soon as practicable after entering the place or premises to be searched, give a facsimile of the warrant to any person who is present and ostensibly in control of the place or premises.

  • Marginal note:Affixing facsimile

    (8) A peace officer who, in any unoccupied place or premises, executes a warrant issued by telephone or other means of telecommunication shall, on entering or as soon as practicable after entering the place or premises, cause a facsimile of the warrant to be suitably affixed in a prominent place within the place or premises.

  • Marginal note:Report of peace officer

    (9) A peace officer to whom a warrant is issued by telephone or other means of telecommunication shall file a written report with the clerk of the court for the territorial division in which the warrant was intended for execution as soon as practicable but within a period not exceeding seven days after the warrant has been executed, which report shall include

    • (a) a statement of the time and date the warrant was executed or, if the warrant was not executed, a statement of the reasons why it was not executed;

    • (b) a statement of the things, if any, that were seized pursuant to the warrant and the location where they are being held; and

    • (c) a statement of the things, if any, that were seized in addition to the things mentioned in the warrant and the location where they are being held, together with a statement of the peace officer’s grounds for believing that those additional things had been obtained by, or used in, the commission of an offence.

  • Marginal note:Bringing before justice

    (10) The clerk of the court shall, as soon as practicable, cause the report, together with the information and the warrant to which it pertains, to be brought before a justice to be dealt with, in respect of the things seized referred to in the report, in the same manner as if the things were seized pursuant to a warrant issued, on an information presented personally by a peace officer, by that justice or another justice for the same territorial division.

  • Marginal note:Proof of authorization

    (11) In any proceeding in which it is material for a court to be satisfied that a search or seizure was authorized by a warrant issued by telephone or other means of telecommunication, the absence of the information or warrant, signed by the justice and carrying on its face a notation of the time, date and place of issuance, is, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, proof that the search or seizure was not authorized by a warrant issued by telephone or other means of telecommunication.

  • Marginal note:Duplicates and facsimiles acceptable

    (12) A duplicate or a facsimile of an information or a warrant has the same probative force as the original for the purposes of subsection (11).

  • R.S., 1985, c. 27 (1st Supp.), s. 69
  • 1992, c. 1, ss. 58, 59(E), 60(F)
  • 1994, c. 44, s. 37
  • 2018, c. 21, s. 19

Marginal note:Where warrant not necessary

 A peace officer, or a public officer who has been appointed or designated to administer or enforce any federal or provincial law and whose duties include the enforcement of this or any other Act of Parliament, may, in the course of his or her duties, exercise any of the powers described in subsection 487(1) or 492.1(1) without a warrant if the conditions for obtaining a warrant exist but by reason of exigent circumstances it would be impracticable to obtain a warrant.

  • 1997, c. 18, s. 46

Marginal note:Restriction on publication

 If a search warrant is issued under section 487 or 487.1 or a search is made under such a warrant, every one who publishes in any document, or broadcasts or transmits in any way, any information with respect to

  • (a) the location of the place searched or to be searched, or

  • (b) the identity of any person who is or appears to occupy or be in possession or control of that place or who is suspected of being involved in any offence in relation to which the warrant was issued,

without the consent of every person referred to in paragraph (b) is, unless a charge has been laid in respect of any offence in relation to which the warrant was issued, guilty of an offence punishable on summary conviction.

  • R.S., 1985, c. 27 (1st Supp.), s. 69
  • 2005, c. 32, s. 16

Marginal note:Order denying access to information

  •  (1) On application made at the time an application is made for a warrant under this or any other Act of Parliament, an order under any of sections 487.013 to 487.018 or an authorization under section 529 or 529.4, or at a later time, a justice, a judge of a superior court of criminal jurisdiction or a judge of the Court of Quebec may make an order prohibiting access to, and the disclosure of, any information relating to the warrant, order or authorization on the ground that

    • (a) the ends of justice would be subverted by the disclosure for one of the reasons referred to in subsection (2) or the information might be used for an improper purpose; and

    • (b) the reason referred to in paragraph (a) outweighs in importance the access to the information.

  • Marginal note:Reasons

    (2) For the purposes of paragraph (1)(a), an order may be made under subsection (1) on the ground that the ends of justice would be subverted by the disclosure

    • (a) if disclosure of the information would

      • (i) compromise the identity of a confidential informant,

      • (ii) compromise the nature and extent of an ongoing investigation,

      • (iii) endanger a person engaged in particular intelligence-gathering techniques and thereby prejudice future investigations in which similar techniques would be used, or

      • (iv) prejudice the interests of an innocent person; and

    • (b) for any other sufficient reason.

  • Marginal note:Procedure

    (3) Where an order is made under subsection (1), all documents relating to the application shall, subject to any terms and conditions that the justice or judge considers desirable in the circumstances, including, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, any term or condition concerning the duration of the prohibition, partial disclosure of a document, deletion of any information or the occurrence of a condition, be placed in a packet and sealed by the justice or judge immediately on determination of the application, and that packet shall be kept in the custody of the court in a place to which the public has no access or in any other place that the justice or judge may authorize and shall not be dealt with except in accordance with the terms and conditions specified in the order or as varied under subsection (4).

  • Marginal note:Application for variance of order

    (4) An application to terminate the order or vary any of its terms and conditions may be made to the justice or judge who made the order or a judge of the court before which any proceedings arising out of the investigation in relation to which the warrant or production order was obtained may be held.

  • 1997, c. 23, s. 14, c. 39, s. 1
  • 2004, c. 3, s. 8
  • 2014, c. 31, s. 22

Marginal note:Execution of search warrant

 A warrant issued under section 487 or 487.1 shall be executed by day, unless

  • (a) the justice is satisfied that there are reasonable grounds for it to be executed by night;

  • (b) the reasonable grounds are included in the information; and

  • (c) the warrant authorizes that it be executed by night.

  • R.S., 1985, c. C-46, s. 488
  • R.S., 1985, c. 27 (1st Supp.), s. 70
  • 1997, c. 18, s. 47

Marginal note:Definitions

  •  (1) The following definitions apply in this section and in section 488.02.

    data

    data has the same meaning as in section 487.011. (données)

    document

    document has the same meaning as in section 487.011. (document)

    journalist

    journalist has the same meaning as in subsection 39.1(1) of the Canada Evidence Act. (journaliste)

    journalistic source

    journalistic source has the same meaning as in subsection 39.1(1) of the Canada Evidence Act. (source journalistique)

    officer

    officer means a peace officer or public officer. (fonctionnaire)

  • Marginal note:Warrant, authorization and order

    (2) Despite any other provision of this Act, if an applicant for a warrant under section 487.01, 487.1, 492.1 or 492.2, a search warrant under this Act, notably under section 487, an authorization under section 184.2, 184.3, 186 or 188, or an order under any of sections 487.014 to 487.017 knows that the application relates to a journalist’s communications or an object, document or data relating to or in the possession of a journalist, they shall make an application to a judge of a superior court of criminal jurisdiction or to a judge as defined in section 552. That judge has exclusive jurisdiction to dispose of the application.

  • Marginal note:Warrant, authorization and order

    (3) A judge may issue a warrant, authorization or order under subsection (2) only if, in addition to the conditions required for the issue of the warrant, authorization or order, he or she is satisfied that

    • (a) there is no other way by which the information can reasonably be obtained; and

    • (b) the public interest in the investigation and prosecution of a criminal offence outweighs the journalist’s right to privacy in gathering and disseminating information.

  • Marginal note:Special Advocate

    (4) The judge to whom the application for the warrant, authorization or order is made may, in his or her discretion, request that a special advocate present observations in the interests of freedom of the press concerning the conditions set out in subsection (3).

  • Marginal note:Offence by journalist — exception

    (5) Subsections (3) and (4) do not apply in respect of an application for a warrant, authorization or order that is made in relation to the commission of an offence by a journalist.

  • Marginal note:Offence by journalist — order

    (6) If a warrant, authorization or order referred to in subsection (2) is sought in relation to the commission of an offence by a journalist and the judge considers it necessary to protect the confidentiality of journalistic sources, the judge may order that some or all documents obtained pursuant to the warrant, authorization or order are to be dealt with in accordance with section 488.02.

  • Marginal note:Conditions

    (7) The warrant, authorization or order referred to in subsection (2) may contain any conditions that the judge considers appropriate to protect the confidentiality of journalistic sources and to limit the disruption of journalistic activities.

  • Marginal note:Powers

    (8) The judge who rules on the application for the warrant, authorization or order referred to in subsection (2) has the same powers, with the necessary adaptations, as the authority who may issue the warrant, authorization or order.

  • Marginal note:Discovery of relation to journalist

    (9) If an officer, acting under a warrant, authorization or order referred to in subsection (2) for which an application was not made in accordance with that subsection, becomes aware that the warrant, authorization or order relates to a journalist’s communications or an object, document or data relating to or in the possession of a journalist, the officer shall, as soon as possible, make an ex parte application to a judge of a superior court of criminal jurisdiction or a judge as defined in section 552 and, until the judge disposes of the application,

    • (a) refrain from examining or reproducing, in whole or in part, any document obtained pursuant to the warrant, authorization or order; and

    • (b) place any document obtained pursuant to the warrant, authorization or order in a sealed packet and keep it in a place to which the public has no access.

  • Marginal note:Powers of judge

    (10) On an application under subsection (9), the judge may

    • (a) confirm the warrant, authorization or order if the judge is of the opinion that no additional conditions to protect the confidentiality of journalistic sources and to limit the disruption of journalistic activities should be imposed;

    • (b) vary the warrant, authorization or order to impose any conditions that the judge considers appropriate to protect the confidentiality of journalistic sources and to limit the disruption of journalistic activities;

    • (c) if the judge considers it necessary to protect the confidentiality of journalistic sources, order that some or all documents that were or will be obtained pursuant to the warrant, authorization or order are to be dealt with in accordance with section 488.02; or

    • (d) revoke the warrant, authorization or order if the judge is of the opinion that the applicant knew or ought reasonably to have known that the application for the warrant, authorization or order related to a journalist’s communications or an object, document or data relating to or in the possession of a journalist.

  • 2017, c. 22, s. 3
 
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