In Canada, matters related to the possession, transportation, and storage of guns or any other weapons are regulated through the Firearms Act. There are specific licensing and registration requirements for possession and acquisition of firearms under the Canadian Criminal Law. When charged with a firearm offence, it’s best to consult with an experienced assault lawyer to help you find the best defence for your legal matter.
Anyone who fails to comply with the laws and regulations governing the usage of weapons as prescribed in the Criminal Code and the Firearms Act can be charged with a firearm offence in Canada. There is a range of weapon-related felonies and penalties you could face, like pointing a weapon at someone illegally, carrying, transporting, or storing a gun illegally, using a weapon during the commissioning of an assault, and more.
As a professional team of criminal defence lawyers, below we provide you with some top tips on how you can best deal with your firearm charges:
Police Search Without A Warrant
When you’re being investigated for a potential firearms offence, the police will need to ask for your permission to search your car or house to find the targeted weapon. Suppose they do not have a search warrant; in that case, you’re under no obligation to allow them to search your vehicle or residential premises.
Scope Of The Search Warrant
If the law enforcement officer enters your house carrying a weapon, pay close attention to what they do and the areas of the house, they visit. This will help you discuss your legal matter with your criminal defence lawyer, especially about the search warrant’s proper execution later on. This is vital because the police might exceed their warrant scope while searching, helping build your legal defence.
Your Right To Remain Silent
When you’re detained or charged with a firearm-related felony, the authorities might ask you for your statement or question you about your criminal case. In that case, you must keep in mind that you’re under no obligation to provide the police with information about your legal issue. However, you can share your identification, registration, licence, or authorisation, and not more than that.
You must not answer anything beyond questions related to your identity until you have sought the legal advice from a dedicated assault lawyer. The law enforcement authorities can use your shared information against you during your trial. They can also utilise this information to justify the search done against your will and seizure of firearms or weapons in your possession.
When The Police Seizes Your Weapon(s)
When facing firearms charges, the police may seize your gun(s) and revoke your licence, authorisation, and registration. Until or unless your legal matter gets resolved and your licence to handle guns lawfully gets restored, it’s best to avoid carrying any other weapon(s) to prevent further criminal assault charges in this regard.
Seek Legal Consultation
When the police arrest you or seize your pistol or shotgun, you should contact an expert criminal defence attorney right away. This way, your assault attorney can begin the necessary work to prevent your weapon from being forfeited to the local government. After the authorities have taken your gun, there is a standard 30-day time period for hearing purposes where a justice determines whether or not they should forfeit your weapon to the government.
If you don’t have the proper representation during this hearing, you might permanently lose your weapon(s).
Slaferek Callihoo is a reputed criminal defence law firm based in Edmonton, Alberta. We successfully defend all significant criminal offences, including firearm assault charges. Visit our website to learn more about our expert legal services or contact us for legal advice.