Most of Canada’s dangerous offenders housed in medium- and minimum-security prisons

Most of Canada's dangerous offenders housed in medium- and minimum-security prisons

Federal statistics show most of the 700 offenders deemed most dangerous in Canada are housed in medium- and minimum-security prisons.

The data were tabled in Parliament in response to a written question from Frank Caputo, a Conservative member of Parliament from British Columbia.

His query came after news broke that notorious serial killer and rapist Paul Bernardo had been transferred to a medium-security prison in Quebec from his maximum-security lodgings at Ontario’s Millhaven Institution.


The Correctional Service of Canada reviewed its decision following widespread public backlash and concluded that officials followed the proper policy in moving Bernardo, who is serving an indeterminate life sentence and has been declared a dangerous offender.

Prison system commissioner Anne Kelly has said Bernardo does not pose a public-safety risk and the conditions in medium security are similar to — and no more luxurious than — those in maximum security.

Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre has nonetheless called on the Liberal government to intervene and ensure that Bernardo and other dangerous offenders are forced to serve out their entire sentences in maximum security.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 21, 2023.

The Canadian PressThe Canadian Press

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