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Over 68,000 guns seized in cross-border mail in four-year span: Report

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A Canada Border Services Agency Report said that just over 68,000 guns were seized by federal agents in cross-border mail between 2018 and 2022.

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The report, which put the total at 68,338 guns, was the first to date to identify the scope of gun smuggling.

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“Ninety-six per cent of Canada Border Services Agency firearm seizures, which includes parts, magazines and ammunition, occurred in the postal mode,” said the report.

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Auditors said that between 2018 and 2022, agents seized 71,003 firearms with 68,338 being contraband in cross-border mail.

Under the Canada Post Corporation Act, only postal inspectors, not police, are permitted to intercept suspicious packages in transit.

On June 6, the Senate gave Second Reading to Bill S-256 — An Act to Amend the Canada Post Corporation Act — to allow police to intercept suspicious parcels in transit.

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“Traffickers have spread the word that there is much less risk of their packages being intercepted if they send them through Canada Post rather than through any other private courier company such as FedEx, UPS, Purolator or DHL,” Sen. Claude Carignan, who sponsored Bill S-256, told the Senate earlier.

“This bill will finally close the loophole that traffickers have been exploiting in the Canada Post Corporation Act. This loophole, which only applies to items sent by Canada Post and not through other courier companies, means that traffickers prefer to do business with Canada Post.”

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Cabinet has acknowledged it does not know how many guns are smuggled into Canada by road, rail or marine freight.

The report said detector dogs cost $7.7 million annually and tracked few smuggled firearms — with dog teams more effective in frightening smugglers than anything else.

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