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Is it a Crime to Not Let Someone Leave?

You can be charged with a criminal offence for preventing someone from leaving.

You can be charged with a criminal offence for preventing someone from leaving.

  • It is a criminal offence to not let someone leave.
  • You may be charged with criminal offences of kidnapping or forcible confinement depending on the circumstances of the alleged offence.
  • Forcible confinement can be defined as depriving an individual of the liberty to move from one point to another by unlawfully confining, imprisoning or forcibly seizing that person.

Criminal Code of Canada

Kidnapping

  • 279 (1) Every person commits an offence who kidnaps a person with intent
    • (a) to cause the person to be confined or imprisoned against the person’s will;
    • (b) to cause the person to be unlawfully sent or transported out of Canada against the person’s will; or
    • (c) to hold the person for ransom or to service against the person’s will.
  • Marginal note:Punishment

(1.1) Every person who commits an offence under subsection (1) is guilty of an indictable offence and liable

    • (a) if a restricted firearm or prohibited firearm is used in the commission of the offence or if any firearm is used in the commission of the offence and the offence is committed for the benefit of, at the direction of, or in association with, a criminal organization, to imprisonment for life and to a minimum punishment of imprisonment for a term of
      • (i) in the case of a first offence, five years, and
      • (ii) in the case of a second or subsequent offence, seven years;
    • (a.1) in any other case where a firearm is used in the commission of the offence, to imprisonment for life and to a minimum punishment of imprisonment for a term of four years;
    • (a.2) if the person referred to in paragraph (1)(a), (b) or (c) is under 16 years of age, to imprisonment for life and, unless the person who commits the offence is a parent, guardian or person having the lawful care or charge of the person referred to in that paragraph, to a minimum punishment of imprisonment for a term of five years; and
    • (b) in any other case, to imprisonment for life.
  • Marginal note:Subsequent offences

(1.2) In determining, for the purpose of paragraph (1.1)(a), whether a convicted person has committed a second or subsequent offence, if the person was earlier convicted of any of the following offences, that offence is to be considered as an earlier offence:

    • (a) an offence under subsection (1);
    • (b) an offence under subsection 85(1) or (2) or section 244 or 244.2; or
    • (c) an offence under section 220, 236, 239, 272, 273, 279.1, 344 or 346 if a firearm was used in the commission of the offence.

However, an earlier offence shall not be taken into account if 10 years have elapsed between the day on which the person was convicted of the earlier offence and the day on which the person was convicted of the offence for which sentence is being imposed, not taking into account any time in custody.

  • Marginal note:Factors to consider

(1.21) In imposing a sentence under paragraph (1.1)(a.2), the court shall take into account the age and vulnerability of the victim.

  • Marginal note:Sequence of convictions only

(1.3) For the purposes of subsection (1.2), the only question to be considered is the sequence of convictions and no consideration shall be given to the sequence of commission of offences or whether any offence occurred before or after any conviction.

  • Marginal note:Forcible confinement

(2) Every one who, without lawful authority, confines, imprisons or forcibly seizes another person is guilty of

    • (a) an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding ten years; or
    • (b) an offence punishable on summary conviction and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding eighteen months.
  • Marginal note:Non-resistance

(3) In proceedings under this section, the fact that the person in relation to whom the offence is alleged to have been committed did not resist is not a defence unless the accused proves that the failure to resist was not caused by threats, duress, force or exhibition of force.

  • R.S., 1985, c. C-46, s. 279;
  •  R.S., 1985, c. 27 (1st Supp.), s. 39;
  •  1995, c. 39, s. 147;
  •  1997, c. 18, s. 14;
  •  2008, c. 6, s. 30;
  •  2009, c. 22, s. 12;
  •  2013, c. 32, s. 1.

 

 

13 Jun 2017

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