Kootenay Columbia Member of Parliament (MP) David Wilks introduced a Private Member’s Bill in the House of Commons in Ottawa that recognizes the seriousness of kidnapping a person under the age of 16 years.
“The new law will prescribe minimum sentences to stranger kidnappings,” said Wilks. “This new law will come with a minimum sentence of five years for those convicted in the first instance.”
Wilks moved for leave to introduce Bill C-299, an Act to amend the Criminal Code when dealing with cases involving the kidnapping of young persons.
“Mr. Speaker, I rise today to introduce my private member’s bill to recognize the severity of kidnapping a child under the age of 16 by a stranger. As most members know, earlier this month Kienan Hebert was kidnapped from his residence in Sparwood. He was safely returned,” he said.
Wilks went on to explain the time had come to “send a message to those who do these crimes that they will not be tolerated in Canada.”
He again referenced to the kidnapping of Hebert when he said, “I believe that all Canadians were overcome with fear when Kienan Hebert was kidnapped and elated upon his safe return. We must send a message to those individuals who commit these acts that it will not be tolerated and I believe this Bill does that.”
Wilks said his decision to introduce this bill was partially due to the response of the people he represents.
“Constituents across my riding have written, emailed and called me asking for this legislation to be introduced,” said Wilks. “I will continue to stand up for all Canadians on law enforcement issues.”
The motion was adopted and the bill was read the first time.