THUNDER BAY – CBSA officers at the Pigeon River port of entry (POE) processed 42,709 travelers in 21,490 vehicles, representing a 13.5 percent increase in travelers and an 11.9 percent increase in vehicle traffic compared to the same period last year. Officers also processed 568 commercial drivers. The month of December finished the year with a significant increase.
Pigeon River Immigration highlights
In December, CBSA officers at the Pigeon River POE conducted 241 immigration examinations which resulted in the issuance of 12 immigration documents (such as work permits, study permits and temporary resident permits). One individual was allowed to withdraw his application to enter Canada due to criminality.
On December 18, a U.S. commercial carrier destined for Minnesota inadvertently drove to the Pigeon River POE and presented himself for examination. Further immigration processing revealed that the person had been previously granted a Temporary Resident Permit (TRP) to overcome his criminal inadmissibility but the document had since expired. The individual was given the option of voluntarily withdrawing his application to enter Canada and he returned to the United States.
Pigeon River Customs highlights
In December, CBSA officers conducted 1,915 secondary examinations for customs purposes or on behalf of other government departments, initiating eight seizure actions for various offences and issued an additional 33 written warnings for undeclared or improperly reported goods.
On December 8, two Canadian residents returning from a same-day absence from Canada were referred for further customs processing to pay taxes on declared goods amounting to $350. The travelers were also referred for a secondary examination after the Primary Inspection Line officer noted behavioural and verbal indicators of potential non-compliance. During the payment process, one of the returning residents stated that he only had one parcel, a guitar amplifier, which was acquired in the United States.
During the examination, officers found an electric guitar and numerous other guitar accessories. They also found a receipt indicating that multiple parcels were acquired. When questioned about the guitar, one of the individuals stated that he had purchased it in Thunder Bay but later admitted that he had in fact bought it online and attempted to smuggle it across the border with the accessories. In total, the undeclared goods amounted to $512.10.
The officer seized the undeclared goods for the allegation of non-report and returned them to the individual only after payment of the terms of release amounting to $128.03. Had the traveler declared the goods properly, he would only have paid $66.57.
After an absence of 24 hours, you may bring back $200 worth of goods duty- and tax-free; after 48 hours, your personal exemption will be $800. There are no exemptions for same-day travel. Alcohol and tobacco can be imported free of duty and taxes only if you have been away at least 48 hours. For amounts allowed and additional information, check http://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/travel-voyage/menu-eng.html.
The CBSA reminds travelers to truthfully declare all purchases and goods received outside of Canada upon their return. Smuggling, undervaluation and other Customs Act offences may lead to seizure and/or prosecution in a court of law. The CBSA keeps a record of infractions in its computer system. If you have an infraction record, you may have to undergo a more detailed examination on future trips.