The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) and the Ministry of the Interior (MININT) of the Republic of Cuba signed an agreement today to strengthen their cooperation to prevent and fight sexual crimes against children.
This collaboration will focus, among other things, on the issue of transnational child sex offenders.
Strong cooperation—through communication and information‑sharing—between law enforcement in originating and destination countries is key to the prosecution of transnational child sex offenders who may otherwise slip through jurisdictional cracks and continue to use travel and tourism to access and sexually exploit children.
While Canada and Cuba have worked closely together on investigations, this new agreement formalizes their respective roles and responsibilities and solidifies this important partnership.
Specifically, the agreement will facilitate the exchange of information in investigations of sexual crimes against children. It will also allow the RCMP and the MININT to:
- Coordinate, collaborate on and/or conduct joint investigations;
- train and educate law enforcement officials in preventing and fighting sexual crimes against children;
- exchange expertise, methodologies, best practices, and technologies.
"Transnational child sexual abuse is a global problem which impacts every region of the world. It is an intolerable crime with devastating consequences for its victims. Strengthening this important partnership with Cuba will assist the prosecution of child sex offenders, help build long-term solutions and better ensure the safety of children."
– The Honourable Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness
"The RCMP is pleased to finalize this working level arrangement to fight sexual crimes against children—a matter that is of utmost importance to our two countries. It builds on a long‑standing and successful working relationship between the RCMP and the Cuban National Police (MININT) to protect the most vulnerable of our respective societies and to bring perpetrators to justice."
– François Bidal, Acting Deputy Commissioner, Specialized Policing Services, RCMP
Under the Criminal Code, specifically, sub-section 7 (4.1 and 4.11), a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada may be charged in Canada for a sexual offence against a child committed in a foreign country.
The Canadian National Sex Offender Registry was established in 2004. There are currently 48,350 entries in the Registry; 70 % represent individuals who have been convicted of a sexual offense against a child.
On December 1, 2016, new reporting requirements for Registered Sex Offenders (RSOs) came into force. They require RSOs convicted of a child sex offence to notify local police of any international travel. In addition, they set out the authority for information‑sharing between the RCMP and the Canada Border Services Agency regarding registered high-risk child sex offenders.