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Ontario government creates new legislation to deter auto thefts

DAN CEARNS The Standard

DURHAM/KAWARTHA: The Ontario government is introducing new legislation to try to deter the growth of auto theft.

On Tuesday, May 14th, it was announced the government is introducing legislation which would see anyone convicted of auto theft having their driver’s license suspended.

“Under the proposed legislation, thieves convicted of motor vehicle theft under the Criminal Code would face a ten-year licence suspension for a first offence, a 15-year licence suspension for a second offence and a lifetime licence suspension for a third offence. Licence suspensions would apply to convictions where the court found aggravating factors were involved in the commission of the offence, such as violence, use of a weapon, use of force, threat, or pursuit of financial gain,” an Ontario government press release explained.

At a press conference, Prabmeet Sarkaria, Ontario’s Minister of Transportation, discussed the importance of this new legislation.

“Every fourteen minutes, a car is stolen in Ontario, with a 78 percent increase in violent carjackings in the last three years,” he said. “It is unacceptable that people are being forced out of their vehicles at gunpoint and forced to look over their shoulders while pumping gas or pulling into driveways.”

Minister Sarkaria added, “Driving is a privilege, not a right.”

“If you’re shameful enough to prey on other members of the community for your own reckless gain, you’ll lose that privilege,” he stated.

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