Faculty Author Type

Current Faculty [Benjamin Perrin]

Published In

International Journal of Social Science Studies

Document Type


Publication Date



migrant smuggling; Canadian law; human smuggling; human trafficking; Canada; detention; sentencing; criminal law; immigration law; criminology; terrorism


Migrant smuggling is a dangerous, sometimes deadly, criminal activity. Failing to respond effectively to migrant smuggling and deter it will risk emboldening those who engage in this illicit enterprise, which generates proceeds for organized crime and criminal networks, funds terrorism and facilitates clandestine terrorist travel, endangers the lives and safety of smuggled migrants, undermines border security, and undermines the integrity and fairness of immigration systems. Introduced in the Canadian House of Commons in June 2011, the Preventing Human Smugglers from Abusing Canada’s Immigration System Act (Bill C-4) includes proposed amendments to the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act that would enhance the existing offense of migrant smuggling, modify the general detention provisions for foreign nationals on arrival in Canada on grounds of serious criminality, criminality, or organized criminality, and require mandatory detention for groups of smuggled migrants. This article analyzes Bill C-4 and proposes amendments to it that would provide a more balanced response to migrant smuggling. The article concludes by arguing that a comprehensive approach to addressing migrant smuggling ultimately requires three primary strategies be pursued together at the national and international levels: (1) national jurisdictions must take greater action to discourage illegal migration and disrupt migrant smuggling operations and through international cooperation; (2) national jurisdictions must establish more efficient refugee-determination processes and expedient procedures to remove failed claimants; and, (3) as part of the solution, the international community should continue to develop a proactive response to the global refugee situation.


Alternate Online Access

Locate the Document

Alternate Online Access



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.