27 Apr No Comments stu@crimapp.com Canada, CIC , , ,

Section 37(1)(a) of the Canadian Immigrant and Refugee Protection Act ("IRPA") provides that an individual is not admissible to Canada if (s)he engaged in organized criminality. Hussain Saif allowed his address to be used as mail drop for an putative immigrants attempting to document their claims. Roughly 300 individuals were registered to the Applicant's home. He ultimately pled guilty to conspiracy to commit a summary offense and received a five month conditional sentence. He was deemed inadmissible because of his involvement in organized crime. In narrowing the definition, the Canadian Federal Court of Appeals said:

Although an unrestricted and broad interpretation is to be given to the word “organization” as it is used in subsection 37(1), the provision still requires the existence of common organizational characteristics such as “identity, leadership, a loose hierarchy and a basic organizational structure”: see Sittampalam, at paras 38-39, above. Third parties who individually transact with a criminal organization cannot reasonably be seen to be “members” nor can they be considered to be “engaged in activity that is part of a pattern of criminal activity planned and organized by a number of persons acting in concert in furtherance of the commission of an indictable offence”. By way of analogy, no one would consider a purchaser of narcotics, without further involvement, to be either a member of, or acting in concert with, a criminal organization established to sell the narcotics, even though both are engaged in common in a criminal transaction.

Saif v. Canada (Citizenship and Immigration), 2016 FC 437 (CanLII). Saif stands for the proposition that the individuals who interact with larger criminal groups such as thieves who sell to organized fencing operations, street level dealers, and similar "lower level cogs" have the possibility of avoiding this designation.