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Old August 13th, 2008, 13:18   #65
The Saint
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Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Quebec
Originally Posted by Capt. T/O View Post

Sorry, but I'm not too sure if I'm following your argument here.
Perhaps we are discussing two different issues here.

So I read your post above mine and noticed that you state that the original purpose of this post was to discuss possession offenses, as relating to airsoft guns.

My original post was just to state that the definition of a firearm under the CCC is different than the definition of a firearm under the FA.

If we are just limiting our discussion to that of possession offenses, then you are absolutely correct, the FA would govern and under the FA, a firearm is defined as having to shoot greater than 500 fps AND 5.7 joules of energy.
I said this thread falls under Possession Offences. The definition of what is considered a firearm for the purpose of said offences is a inseparable part of that. So what we've been going back and forth about in relevant to this discussion.

However, if we are discussing other indictable crimes, such as pointing a firearm, then the definition under the CCC would govern and the prosecutor need only show that the airgun shot greater than 500 fps OR had a muzzle energy greater than 5.7 joules.

Am I correct in that assessment?
Sort of yes and no.

Section 87 (Pointing a firearm) of the Criminal Code is not one of the sections listed under subsection 84(3). Therefore, one could argue that the Criminal Code observes neither the muzzle velocity or muzzle energy for the purpose of determining whether something is a firearm in that particular offence, but rather falls back on firearm's definition of "causing serious bodily injury or death to a person..."

In the case of section 85 (Using firearm in commission of offence), the device in question doesn't even have to shoot, because the term used is imitation firearm.

Nonetheless. You have stated that "The amendment is part of a bill that applies to BOTH the Firearms Act and Criminal Code for purpose of modernizing the definition of what are not considered to be firearms, as per the summary of the bill itself."

Sure, the proposed amendments were for both. HOWEVER, only the FA was amended and the CCC remains the same (respecting the definition). The FA and CCC clearly have two different definitions of a firearm. The proposed amendment was NOT incorporated into the CCC and only into the FA. That is why we are having this discussion, as there is obviously room for interpretation here.
I don't understand what you meant by "only the FA was amended and the CCC remains the same (respecting the definition)." Technically, the 5.7J and 500FPS figure can only be found in the Criminal Code. It does not show up in the Firearms Act at all, literally. However, it doesn't have to, because the Criminal Code refers to the Firearms Act and vice-versa.

There is no room for interpretation on where the amendment appears. The only room for interpretation is how it's worded, which led to me providing the legislative history to clear that up.

You state that you would not consider it limited to the purpose definition of a firearm for registration purposes. But only the FA was amended to include "or muzzle energy of 5.7 joules" language and not the CCC. So it can be implied that the definition set out in the FA would only be applicable to the range of offenses outlined in the FA (and not solely limited to registration but also includes other offenses, as you correctly pointed out) and not in the CCC.
I think a lot of your confusion here is from not having read both acts back to back. Again, the 500fps muzzle velocity figure was first set down BEFORE the Firearms Act, the only thing the Firearms Act did was to paraphrase it. C-10A came along and inserted the muzzle energy figure into the Criminal Code, along with instructions on how it applies to the Firearms Act. C-10A did not insert any muzzle energy or muzzle velocity figures into the Firearms Act, because traditionally such definitions and details fall under the Criminal Code.

You provided this quote...
"The idea here is to ensure that air guns or paint balls designed to have a muzzle velocity exceeding 152.4 metres per second are subject to registration. In addition, those that are adapted to have a muzzle velocity or energy exceeding the limits in the provision will also be subject to registration."

Perhaps its just me, but I don't understand how this can be read as defining a firearm as shooting greater than 500 fps AND having greater than 5.7 joules of energy.
For me.. it reads as..
1. air guns or paintballs having a muzzle velocity greater than 500 fps (152.4 m/s) are subject to registration.
2. air guns or paintballs that are adapted to have a muzzle velocity OR energy exceeding 5.7 joules are subject to registration.

If my understanding is incorrect, please explain.

A lot of people thought that, even me, before reading the legislative history (or whenever I forget legislative history). Simply put, the "or" is functioning more as an "alternate term for the same thing" (which makes energy = velocity as criteria) than as the more common representing alternative and exclusive choices.

Yes, it's completely retarded, everytime I have to explain this I die a little more on the inside.

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