Saskatchewan gets serious about scrap metal theft
By Anthony Capkun
December 15, 2020 – Saskatchewan introduced legislation last week to “enhance the ability of police to respond” to scrap metal theft.
The “Pawned Property (Recording) Amendment Act, 2020” addresses the possible sale of stolen copper and other valuable metals by creating new reporting requirements for scrap metal dealers.
“Police services, farmers and businesses in Saskatchewan have told us about the dangerous growth of metal theft,” said Gordon Wyant, justice minister and attorney general. “This legislation will serve as a valuable tool for police when working to reduce this type of crime, which is often specifically targeted at rural property owners.”
Rural property owners bear a disproportionate burden of this type of crime, says the province, because thieves target isolated properties to avoid detection.
The new legislation requires scrap metal dealers to obtain and record identification and transaction information from their clients, which can then be transmitted to police services in the same manner as with pawn transactions. It also prohibits scrap metal transactions for individuals under 18 and restricts cash transactions.
These measures aim to act as a deterrent by removing the ability to quickly make money by anonymously selling stolen metal.