FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Feb. 17, 2016
QUEEN’S PARK – Worried about the black market in his riding and across the province, Haldimand-Norfolk MPP Toby Barrett has introduced a Private Member’s Bill titled Commission of Inquiry into Illegal Trade and Trafficking of People, Drugs, Money, Tobacco and Weapons Act, 2016.
“The need for something to be done was driven home when I had four separate media outlets from Latin America travel here to interview me about local contraband tobacco in their countries.”
Barrett found the problem was much deeper than trafficking tobacco – encompassing drugs, money and weapons. He gave credit to Laurie Scott, Haliburton-Kawartha Lakes-Brock MPP and Opposition Critic on Women’s Issues, for her work on bringing the trafficking of women to light.
According to freelance journalist Ed Myers, “All smuggling-related crimes are interconnected — organized crime networks that are used to smuggle contraband tobacco are the same as the ones with the same criminals who are running drugs, weapons or humans to fuel more serious crimes or fund terrorist attacks.”
“This bill calls for a commission of inquiry to be struck to compile research and suggest solutions,” Barrett said. “It is designed as an inquiry, not an inquisition.”
First reading of the bill was on Feb. 17. The second reading and debate is scheduled for March 10.
Please see backgrounder attached.
For more information, contact MPP Toby Barrett at 519-428-0446 or [email protected].org