Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper speaks during a press conference after introducing the "The Citizen's Arrest and Self-Defence Act" in Toronto, Canada, Feb. 17, 2011. (Xinhua/Zhou Zheng) TORONTO, Feb. 17 (Xinhua) -- Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper Thursday announced the introduction of The Citizen's Arrest and Self-defense Act.
The legislation will expand the circumstances in which citizens' arrests can be made, and streamline and simplify the self-defense and defense of property provisions in the Criminal Code.
"Our Government is committed to putting real criminals behind bars. Canadians who have been the victim of a crime should not be re-victimized by the criminal justice system," Harper made the remarks at a press conference held in downtown Toronto.
At present, the ability to make a citizen's arrest is very restricted and is only permitted if an individual is caught actively engaged in a criminal offense on or in relation to one's property.
The legislation would authorize an owner, a person in lawful possession of property, or a person authorized by them, to arrest a person within a reasonable amount of time after they find that person committing a criminal offense either on their property or in relation to their property.
"Law-abiding Canadians should not be the target of the criminal justice system. This new law provides clear direction on the appropriate use of citizen's arrest, self-defense and defense of property," noted Stephen Harper.
He also stressed that the legislation recognizes that the police cannot be everywhere at once, and that Canadians must be able to protect themselves and their property in urgent situations.
Editor: Mu Xuequan

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