governmental datamining: Going to Canada? Check your past

Jeff.Hodges at Jeff.Hodges at
Fri Feb 23 02:27:31 PST 2007

for IP if you wish.


Going to Canada? Check your past
Tourists with minor criminal records turned back at border

C.W. Nevius

Friday, February 23, 2007

There was a time not long ago when a trip across the border from the
States to Canada was accomplished with a wink and a wave of a driver's
license. Those days are over.

Take the case of 55-year-old Lake Tahoe resident Greg Felsch. Stopped
at the
border in Vancouver this month at the start of a planned five-day ski
trip, he
was sent back to the United States because of a DUI conviction seven
ago. Not that he had any idea what was going on when he was told at
"Your next stop is immigration.''

Felsch was ushered into a room. "There must have been 75 people in
line," he
says. "We were there for three hours. One woman was in tears. A guy
was sent
back for having a medical marijuana card. I felt like a felon with an

Or ask the well-to-do East Bay couple who flew to British Columbia
this month
for an eight-day ski vacation at the famed Whistler Chateau, where
rooms run
to $500 a night. They'd made the trip many times, but were surprised
at the
border to be told that the husband would have to report to "secondary''

There, in a room he estimates was filled with 60 other concerned
travelers, he
was told he was "a person who was inadmissible to Canada.'' The
problem? A
conviction for marijuana possession.

In 1975.

Welcome to the new world of border security. Unsuspecting Americans are
turning up at the Canadian border expecting clear sailing, only to
find that
their past -- sometimes their distant past -- is suddenly an issue.


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