Message to the Senate Transmitting the Canada-United States Legal Assistance Treaty

 

February 22, 1988

 

To the Senate of the United States:

 

With a view to receiving the advice and consent of the Senate to ratification, I transmit herewith the Treaty between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of Canada on Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters, with Annex, signed at Quebec City on March 18, 1985. I transmit also, for the information of the Senate, the report of the Department of State with respect to the Treaty.

 

The Treaty is one of a series of modern mutual legal assistance treaties being negotiated by the United States in order to counter more effectively criminal activities. The Treaty should be an effective tool to prosecute a wide variety of modern criminals including members of drug cartels, ``white-collar criminals,'' and terrorists. The Treaty is self-executing and utilizes existing statutory authority.

 

The Treaty provides for a broad range of cooperation in criminal matters. Mutual assistance available under the treaty includes: (1) the taking of testimony or statements of witnesses; (2) the provision of documents, records and evidence; (3) the execution of requests for searches and seizures; (4) the serving of documents; and (5) the provision of assistance in proceedings relating to the forefeiture of the proceeds of crime, restitution to the victims of crime, and the collection of fines imposed as a sentence in a criminal prosecution.

 

I recommend that the Senate give early and favorable consideration to the Treaty and give its advice and consent to ratification.

 

Ronald Reagan

 

The White House,

 

February 22, 1988.