Nunavut tourism operator found guilty of violating Nunavut Wildlife Act
Company’s sentencing scheduled for Jan. 23
Nunavut tourism operator Arctic Kingdom has been found guilty of four charges it faced under the Nunavut Wildlife Act.
The Ontario-based company, which has operated in Nunavut for the last 20 years, faced four charges, in the form of tickets, for offering wildlife observation activities without a licence in March 2017, in contravention of section 117 (2) of the Wildlife Act.
Justice Paul Rouleau, an Ontario judge who serves as deputy judge in the Nunavut Court of Justice, stated his decision over the phone at the Nunavut Court of Justice on Monday, Jan. 20.
The company had initially pleaded not guilty, claiming that the wildlife law is too broad and infringes on Section 7 of the Charter of Rights, which guarantees life, liberty and security of the person.
But after a hearing on April 15, 2019, Rouleau dismissed that claim.
The Nunavut Wildlife Act, under a part of the law that’s headed “Commercial and other activities,” states companies need a licence to conduct activities in which wildlife is “the object of interaction, manipulation or close observation, including the making of a film or the provision of an expedition, safari or cruise.”
Arctic Kingdom could face a fine ranging from a minimum of $500 to a maximum of $1 million.
Sentencing is scheduled for Thursday, Jan. 23, at 10 a.m. at the Nunavut Court of Justice.