Are You able to Travel with an Arrest Warrant?
If you have been advised that there is a warrant out for your arrest, either by the police or through a third party, it is important to consult legal counsel as soon as possible. In most cases, the police will attempt to execute arrest warrants by visiting the offender’s home or place of employment to arrest them. In some cases, with minor offences, if the accused cannot be readily found the police will stop actively looking and simply leave the warrant outstanding. In these situations, an accused may have a warrant out for their arrest for some time before they have contact with law enforcement that brings it to light.
If you believe you have an outstanding arrest warrant it is important to deal with it sooner rather than later to minimize the amount of time spent in custody upon arrest. An accused person who is arrested suddenly and at random, for example during a traffic stop, may spend more time in custody because they do not have a bail plan or surety in place.
Retaining legal counsel prior to surrendering to police will ensure all of the accused’s rights are protected throughout the arrest and release process. It will also ensure the accused is not held in custody longer than necessary. An accused who retains legal counsel prior to surrendering has the ability to work out a release plan prior to attending court to ensure a quick release.
If you are concerned that you may have an outstanding arrest warrant Donich Law can help determine whether that is the case. We have experience negotiating the surrender of clients charged with various offences including serious offences. We can determine the method of release preferred by police prior to surrender to ensure no surprises during the arrest process. We can assist you in developing a strong release plan if necessary, to ensure bail is granted with the least restrictive conditions.
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Frequently Asked Questions
How do I Know if There is a Warrant for my Arrest?
Can the Police Arrest me Without a Warrant?
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Where can the Police Arrest me if There is a Warrant for my Arrest?
Assaulting a Peace Officer
Sexual Assault Law in Canada
Consequences of a Criminal Record
Keeping Charges Private
Travel & US Waivers
Vulnerable Sector Screening
Elements of a Crime
Are you Able to Travel with an Arrest Warrant?
If you believe the Court has issued a warrant for your arrest it is prudent to take care of the matter sooner rather than later. Avoiding a warrant will often lead to negative consequences for an accused, one of which is difficulty or the inability to travel. Having an active warrant out for one’s arrest means that that individual may be arrested at any time. Any interaction with law enforcement could lead to the accused being taken into custody. This includes traffic stops and traveling over an international Canadian border.
Donich Law has experience assisting individuals with active arrest warrants by negotiating their surrender and negotiating their subsequent release. If you have plans to travel and believe there may be a warrant out for your arrest, we can assist you in resolving the matter as quickly as possible.
Can I Travel with an Arrest Warrant?
If you believe there may be a warrant out for your arrest, and you have plans to travel it is important to deal with the warrant prior to leaving, especially for international travel. Being arrested while traveling can add added complications to an already confusing experience. As a result, it is often better for an accused to turn themselves in on their own terms than to be suddenly arrested during an unrelated police encounter.
Traveling Inside of Canada
For the most part, an arrest warrant may only be executed inside the province or territory where it was issued. This means that most warrants issued inside Ontario may only be executed by law enforcement inside Ontario. As a result, an individual who has a warrant out for their arrest in Ontario but is traveling to another province or territory is unlikely to be arrested while traveling. Since Canadian’s are free to travel throughout Canada, it is unlikely that such an individual would have an interaction with law enforcement that would lead to their arrest.
Traveling Outside of Canada
Attempting to travel outside of Canada with an active arrest warrant is much riskier than traveling inside Canada. Recently, Canadian Border Agents have been granted access to the Canadian Police Information Centre (CPIC). CPIC is a national law enforcement database that allows police all over the country to search an individual’s criminal history, including whether they have active warrants.
When an individual is attempting to travel over an international Canadian border there is a chance that the Canadian Border Agent screening them will run their name through CPIC. If the Agent discovers the traveler has an outstanding warrant or has reason to believe the traveler has an outstanding warrant, they will arrest the traveler. The accused person will then generally be transported back to the jurisdiction in which the warrant originated to be processed and face their charges.
If you believe there may be a warrant out for your arrest and are planning on traveling Donich Law can assist you in resolving the matter prior to your leaving the country to ensure quick and efficient arrest, processing and release.
Can I Travel with Outstanding Criminal Charges?
Once can accused has surrendered themselves on an arrest warrant, they will either be charged or released without charge. In most cases, charges will be laid, and the accused will be released either on a promise to appear, on their own recognizance or on bail with a surety. In most situations, an accused’s recognizance or bail will come with conditions of their release. The accused must abide by these conditions until their matter has resolved or until the Court varies the conditions.
In many cases, the conditions accompanying an accused’s release will require them to stay within Ontario unless they have been granted permission by the Court to leave. If an individual on such release conditions leaves Ontario without permission from the Court, they will likely be charged with a breach of recognizance. This is an additional charge that carries a maximum penalty of up to two years in prison for those who are convicted.
As a result, an individual who has outstanding criminal charges and has been released from custody with a condition not to leave the province must get permission from the Court prior to attempting to leave. It is also prudent in many cases to get a letter from legal counsel confirming the conditions of the accused’s release and their permission to leave the jurisdiction.
If you have a warrant for your arrest or outstanding criminal charges and are planning on leaving Ontario or Canada, it is important to consult with legal counsel prior to making travel plans to ensure you will not be putting yourself at risk.