The Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) reported this past week that in July of this year, they provided a variety of services and refused entry to a number of travellers who were attempting to enter Canada. These were travellers who were attempting to enter without making truthful and clear declarations regarding the possession of, or the value of, goods they were attempting to bring into the country.
They said an Alabama man arrived at the port in North Portal on July 1, claiming he was going to help a friend move to Alaska. A background check revealed that the subject had a criminal conviction record including one for driving while impaired and obstructing justice, attempting to elude police and jumping bail among other things. He was returned to the United States.
The next day, CBSA officials checked a foreign national who arrived at the North Portal Port with his spouse and children. The man was attempting to apply for a work permit and presented a letter of an offer of employment. CBSA officers, while attempting to verify the offer of employment, learned that the person who wrote the letter no longer worked for the business noted in the letter. The traveller then admitted to being untruthful about the offer and admitted that the family planned on obtaining further status once they got into Canada. The man and his family were issued exclusion orders, banning them from Canada for one year, and they were required to return to the United States.
On that same day, officers questioned another man who was travelling to Alaska. His background revealed that he had been convicted of trafficking cocaine and for being in possession of a weapon during the commission of a felony, aggravated assault and multiple drug-related charges. He was refused entry into Canada.
On July 6, CBSA officers found a loaded revolver inside a motorhome of a Florida couple who were seeking entry into Canada en route to Alaska. Officers seized the firearm along with the motorhome and arrested the male traveller. A $1,000 penalty was issued and upon payment the motorhome was returned to them, but both were refused entry into Canada.
On July 19, officers refused entry to an Indiana resident who had been previously convicted sexual interference with a minor. He was returned to the United States, but the very next day he again attempted to enter Canada and was again refused entry.
On July 23, an Alberta resident returning to Canada from the United States declared a vehicle that he had purchased as having a value of $60,000. During a secondary examination, CBSA officers discovered the traveller had intentionally omitted a $5,000 deposit in an attempt to undervalue the vehicle, which led to the seizure of the vehicle and the payment of a $2,781.35 penalty before it was returned to him. If he had made a truthful declaration, the additional GST payment would have been $250.
That same day, a commercial driver from North Carolina was refused entry after an immigration examination revealed numerous convictions for breaking and entering, theft and burglary. He was returned to the United States.
Again that day, a Wisconsin resident on vacation with his family was arrested after CBSA officers found suspected child pornography on his personal computer during a secondary examination. The man was turned over to members of the Estevan detachment of the RCMP.
On four separate occasions in July, CBSA officers seized over-capacity ammunition magazines from travellers. In each case the travellers were specifically asked by the officers if they had such devices in their possession. The undeclared firearms, as well as the travellers' vehicles were seized and the vehicles were only returned after a penalty of $500 was paid. Large capacity ammunition magazines are prohibited in Canada.
CBSA reminds the public that they appreciate the public's assistance in keeping the borders and communities safe. Anyone with information regarding suspicious cross-border activity is asked to contact the Border Watch Line at 1-888-502-9060. General information regarding border services may be obtained by contacting them at 1-800-461-9999.