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Manitoba bans booby traps

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The province has banned booby traps of the type set up to protect illegal activity such as marijuana grow operations.

A new rule took effect under the Fortified Buildings Act on Sept. 15 targeting traps intended to cause serious injury or death which are triggered by the presence or movement of a person. 

The new rule makes it an offence to set such a trap on a property or to allow a trap to remain there.  Such traps are often used to protect illegal operations like marijuana grow-ops, government officials said in a release.

The new regulations also give the province the power to close buildings if owners do not remove traps or fortifications located on their property.

The new regulations also define other types of fortifications which are prohibited under the act such as razor or barbed wire, certain door and window barriers, and dangerous obstacles.

Landowners are responsible for the cost of removing illegal building fortifications under existing legislation and will also have to pay to remove any illegal traps.

Violators face a fine of up to $25,000, six months in jail or both. Corporations face a fine of up to $50,000.

The law does not affect the historical rights of First Nations trappers, the province said.

The Fortified Buildings Act was put in place in 2002 to give law enforcement a tool to force the removal of barricades and other obstacles that pose a risk to public safety and interfere with an emergency responder or law enforcement officer's ability to access a building.

The amendments and regulations were developed in consultation with law enforcement and other groups.

To report a fortified building, booby trap or a similar risk to community safety, contact the Public Safety Investigations Unit at 204-945-3475 in Winnipeg or 1-800-954-9361 (toll-free).

History

Updated on Monday, September 16, 2013 at 11:42 PM CDT: Corrects typo.

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