If you don’t own firearms you should still be alarmed that the police can turn you from a regular person to a criminal in a matter of second and then seize your property.
With no more than a few keystrokes the RCMP has effectively banned two previous legal rifles – the Swiss Arms carbine/rifle and the Czech CZ858 – without compensation.
The Swiss Arms rifle is a semi-automatic version of the current Swiss military rifle used by target shooters and hunters across Canada. There are number of Swiss Clubs/Associations across Canada who, as a part of Swiss culture and citizenship obligation shoot this rifle on a regular basis.
These are precision rifles with an average value of $3,000 – there are approximately 2,000 of these rifles in Canada. To put that in perspective $6 million in private property is about to be seized.
The Czech CZ858 is a look-alike of the Russian AK47 but entirely mechanically different – none of the internal parts are the same. This rifle has been imported into Canada since 2005 and is regularly used for hunting and sports shooting for the last 7 years.
Approximately 9,000 of these rifles have been legally imported each with a retail value of $700.
Both of these rifles were imported with the full approval of the RCMP after a thorough inspection by the RCMP Firearms Laboratory to ensure that they comply with the Canadian Firearms Act.
Earlier this week these rifle were completely legal – the purchasers of these rifles all have Firearms Possession and Acquisition Licenses, went through a 3 to 6 month waiting period and paid up to $80 for an RCMP criminal record and background check.
This all changed over the last two days. The RCMP has decided that these rifles are now illegal and have now changed the classification of 11,000 of these rifles to Prohibited.
In the Criminal Code of Canada (Section 91), every person commits an offence who possesses a firearm without being the holder of (b) in the case of a prohibited firearm or a restricted firearm, a registration certificate for it is guilty of the crime of "Unauthorized Possession of a Firearm".
Every person who commits an offense under Section 91 is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years; or of an offense punishable on summary conviction.
Are you more in danger now that these firearms are prohibited when no more than 48 hours ago these rifles were completely legal?
Will you be safer when the RCMP come and seize these rifles from people who have licenses, legally have gone through all the background checks, jumped through all the hoops and have legally purchased and used these firearms for the last 10 years?
I don't think so
Even though many of you may not be interested in firearms, we are asking the Canadian public to join with firearms owners and tell the Harper Government and the RCMP that creating 10,000 new criminals in Canada doesn't make Canada any safer.