Banff-based company guilty of unlawfully importing protected coral species into Canada

Calgary, Alberta – December 12, 2018 – Environment and Climate Change Canada

Illegally importing protected wildlife is not acceptable in Canada. Unlawfully exploiting threatened species for profit will not be tolerated.

On December 4, 2018, 2-Eleven Buyers Inc. was ordered in the Provincial Court of Alberta to pay $10,000 for contravening the Wild Animal and Plant Protection and Regulation of International and Interprovincial Trade Act. The company pleaded guilty to one count of violating subsection 6(2) of the Act (importing without a permit). The fine will be directed to the Government of Canada’s Environmental Damages Fund, which is administered by Environment and Climate Change Canada. In addition, the Court ordered 2-Eleven Buyers Inc. to declare all imports of wildlife or plant products to Environment and Climate Change Canada prior to importation, for a period of two years.

On February 18, 2016, Environment and Climate Change Canada’s Enforcement Branch was notified by Canada Border Services Agency officials that a shipment from the United States contained coral. Environment and Climate Change Canada enforcement officers conducted an inspection and found that the shipment contained approximately 115 kilograms of blue coral and stony coral. These are both regulated species listed under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), and, as a result, all imports are subject to strict permitting requirements to ensure that trade does not threaten the survival of the species in the wild. The Wild Animal and Plant Protection and Regulation of International and Interprovincial Trade Act is the law that implements CITES in Canada.

Call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) to anonymously report on wildlife crimes. You may be eligible for a reward of up to $2,000.

Quick facts

  • While stony coral is found in all of the world’s oceans, blue coral is found only in tropical and sub-tropical waters, particularly in the Pacific and Indian Oceans. Threats to the blue coral include illegal harvest for aquariums, habitat destruction, and ocean acidification.
  • More than 180 countries, including Canada, have signed the Convention. These countries work together to protect thousands of the world’s most threatened species in trade.
  • CITES sets controls on the worldwide trade and movement of more than 33,000 animal and plant species that have been, or may be, threatened due to excessive exploitation and trade. CITES uses an international permit system, as implemented by national jurisdictions, to regulate trade in listed species.
  • The Environmental Damages Fund was created in 1995 to provide a mechanism for directing funds received as a result of fines, court orders, and voluntary payments to projects that will benefit our environment.


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