section 83.21(1)

INTRODUCTION AND BRIEF DESCRIPTION

This section makes it an offence to instruct anyone to carry out activities for the benefit of a terrorist group with the intention of enhancing their ability to commit terrorist activities.

SECTION WORDING

83.21 (1) Every person who knowingly instructs, directly or indirectly, any person to carry out any activity for the benefit of, at the direction of or in association with a terrorist group, for the purpose of enhancing the ability of any terrorist group to facilitate or carry out a terrorist activity, is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for life.

EXPLANATION

Section 83.21(1) of the Criminal Code of Canada outlines the criminal offense of instructing or directing a person to carry out activities in association with a terrorist group. This offense is considered extremely serious, as it enhances the ability of terrorist groups to facilitate or carry out acts of terrorism. The section states that every person who knowingly provides instructions to another person, either directly or indirectly, for the benefit of a terrorist group, is committing an indictable offense. The activities carried out under such instructions can range from supplying weapons or financial support to carrying out attacks against innocent civilians. A person charged under this section of the Criminal Code faces a potential life sentence in prison, highlighting the severity of the offense. This is because the actions undertaken by terrorist groups can cause significant harm, not only to the individuals targeted but also to the broader community, causing fear and instability. The section is part of Canada's efforts to combat terrorism, and it is crucial in preventing individuals from providing support to terrorist organizations. By imposing severe penalties for those who engage in such conduct, the section serves as a significant deterrent. Overall, section 83.21(1) of the Criminal Code of Canada is an important tool in preventing the facilitation of terrorist activities and maintaining security and safety within Canadian borders. It sends a strong message that such actions will not be tolerated and will be treated with the utmost seriousness.

COMMENTARY

Section 83.21(1) of the Criminal Code of Canada is a provision that is aimed primarily at preventing individuals from providing support or instruction to terrorist groups. The provision makes it a criminal offence for someone to knowingly instruct, directly or indirectly, another person to carry out any activity for the benefit of, at the direction of or in association with a terrorist group, for the purpose of enhancing the ability of any terrorist group to facilitate or carry out a terrorist activity. The provision is significant because it criminalises any attempts to support or facilitate terrorist activities, even where there may be no direct involvement in the actual commission of terrorist acts. It recognises the fact that terrorists rely on a network of support that includes financiers, recruiters, and trainers, among others. By criminalising support and instruction, the law creates an additional layer of deterrence against those who would otherwise be willing to provide assistance to terrorists. The provision is also notable because it highlights the role of intent in determining whether someone has committed an offence under the law. In order to be found guilty of an offence under Section 83.21(1), an individual must have known that their actions were in support of a terrorist group and must have intended to enhance the group's ability to facilitate or carry out a terrorist activity. This means that individuals who may unwittingly provide support to terrorists, such as by making a donation to a seemingly legitimate charity that is actually a front for terrorist activities, would not be liable under this provision. Overall, Section 83.21(1) reflects Canada's commitment to stopping the spread of terrorism by targeting those who provide support or instruction to terrorist groups. By clearly articulating what actions are and are not allowed, the law helps to create a clear line between acceptable behaviours and those that can lead to imprisonment for life. This helps to make Canada a safer and more secure place to live, and ensures that those who commit acts of terrorism are held accountable for their crimes.

STRATEGY

Section 83.21(1) of the Criminal Code of Canada is an important legal provision that addresses the issue of terrorism and the role of individuals or entities that support terrorist activities. This section criminalizes the act of knowingly instructing, directly or indirectly, anyone to carry out any activity for the benefit of a terrorist group, for the purpose of enhancing its ability to facilitate or carry out a terrorist activity. The punishment for this offence is imprisonment for life. In dealing with this section of the Criminal Code, there are several strategic considerations and strategies that can be employed. One of the strategic considerations when dealing with section 83.21(1) is the need for evidence. As with any criminal case, a conviction for this offence requires evidence that proves beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused knowingly instructed someone to carry out an activity for the benefit of a terrorist group. This evidence could include communication records, written instructions, surveillance footage, financial transactions, and witness testimony. Collecting this evidence requires careful planning and execution, as any misstep could compromise the admissibility of the evidence in court. Another strategic consideration is the need for intelligence gathering. To properly investigate and prosecute cases under section 83.21(1), law enforcement agencies must have access to reliable and actionable intelligence on terrorist groups and their activities. This intelligence could come from domestic and international sources, including signal and open-source intelligence, human intelligence, and law enforcement partnerships. The collection and analysis of this intelligence require specialized skills and resources, and strategic partnerships with other agencies and countries. A third strategic consideration is the need for inter-agency coordination. Combatting terrorism requires the collaborative effort of multiple agencies and departments, including law enforcement, intelligence, border control, and civilian agencies. Inter-agency coordination enhances the effectiveness and efficiency of counter-terrorism efforts, enables the sharing of information and expertise, and avoids duplicative efforts. Effective coordination requires clear communication and a common understanding of roles, responsibilities, and procedures. Several strategies can be employed when dealing with section 83.21(1). One strategy is to focus on disrupting the support network of a terrorist group. This could involve identifying and targeting individuals or entities that provide financial, logistical, or ideological support to a terrorist group. By disrupting the support network, law enforcement agencies can weaken the terrorist group's ability to plan and execute terrorist activities. Another strategy is to use targeted sanctions or asset freezing. This involves identifying and freezing the assets of individuals or entities that support terrorist groups. By depriving these groups of financial resources, law enforcement agencies can significantly limit their ability to carry out terrorist activities. A third strategy is to use non-criminal measures, such as preventative detention or surveillance, to monitor and control the activities of individuals who are known to support terrorist groups. This strategy requires a balance between security and individual rights and must be carried out with due process and transparency. In conclusion, section 83.21(1) of the Criminal Code of Canada is a critical legal provision for combatting terrorism and addressing the role of individuals or entities that support terrorist activities. Dealing with this section requires careful consideration of evidence, intelligence gathering, and inter-agency coordination, as well as the use of various strategies to disrupt the support network of terrorist groups. By working together, law enforcement agencies can achieve greater success in preventing and countering terrorism in Canada.