Vol. 145, No. 21 — October 12, 2011
SI/2011-82 October 12, 2011
STANDING UP FOR VICTIMS OF WHITE COLLAR CRIME ACT
Order Fixing November 1, 2011 as the Day on which the Standing Up for Victims of White Collar Crime Act Comes into Force
P.C. 2011-1121 September 29, 2011
His Excellency the Governor General in Council, on the recommendation of the Minister of Justice, pursuant to section 6 of the Standing up for Victims of White Collar Crime Act, chapter 6 of the Statutes of Canada, 2011, hereby fixes November 1, 2011 as the day on which that Act comes into force.
(This note is not part of the Order.)
Bill C-21, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (sentencing for fraud), received Royal Assent on March 23, 2011 as S.C. 2011, c. 6. The Act makes several changes to the Criminal Code provisions applicable to sentencing for fraud.
The amendments create a two-year mandatory minimum jail sentence for fraud over $1 million and add new aggravating factors that can be considered when handing down sentences in fraud cases. These new aggravating factors include
- the financial and psychological impact of the fraud on the victim, given the victim’s particular circumstances, including their age, health and financial situation;
- the offender concealing or destroying records relating to the fraud or the disbursement of proceeds of the fraud;
- if the offender failed to comply with applicable licensing rules or professional standards; and
- the magnitude, complexity, and duration of the fraud and the degree of planning that went into it.
The amendments will also allow courts to order a convicted offender not to take employment or do volunteer work involving authority over other people’s money.
The legislation will also require that a judge inquire of the prosecutor whether reasonable steps have been taken to provide victims with an opportunity to indicate whether they are seeking restitution. This will allow victims to establish their monetary losses and give them a chance to indicate whether they would like to seek restitution from the offender. Where the victim has sought a restitution order and a decision is made not to make the order, the judge will have to explain why the order was not made. This Act also includes the addition of an optional form in the Criminal Code to assist victims in setting out their losses. Sentencing courts will also be allowed to consider a Community Impact Statement made by a person on a community’s behalf describing the harm done to, or losses suffered by, the community when imposing a sentence on an offender found guilty of fraud.
The Order brings the whole of the Act into force on Tuesday, November 1, 2011.