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“This is our jurisdiction”: Alberta takes over prosecution after Federal gun ban

by The Canadian Parvasi

Centre Court Developments

The provincial Alberta government is taking over prosecutions on gun charges after the Federal gun ban legislature was criticized for affecting hunters by criminalizing guns used by them.

Alberta Justice Minister Tyler Shandro on Thursday stated that the responsibility for the prosecutions of federal firearm charges will be taken over by the provincial government’s Crown prosecution service. The prosecution, according to Shandro, was previously undertaken by the federal government’s lawyers.

The provincial government also issued an advisory document for Alberta prosecutors to ascertain if firearms charges should be pursued or not. The protocol states that charges should not be pursued on someone who obtained their firearm legally before said arms were banned w.e.f May 1, 2020.

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“This is about shoring up their own political support…So today we are taking action,” said Shandro while at a press conference in Edmonton on Thursday, stating that the ban discriminates against hunters, farmers and sport shooters who acquired their firearms legally.

“There is no direction and there should be no direction…There should be no political intervention in prosecution decisions. That is left to our prosecutors. It’s an important part of our democracy,” added Shandro, stating that the advisory document is simply advice, and not an order to the prosecutors to not proceed on the aforementioned charges.

Speaking on Alberta’s decision to assume prosecution responsibilities, Federal Justice Minister David Lametti stated, “It would be extraordinary if they made a unilateral decision not to enforce the law…That would not only offend the Constitution, but would also offend the rule of law.”

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