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8/15/2007
Canada Introduces $10,000 Speeding Ticket
Ontario, Canada applies street racing penalties to motorists who are not racing anybody.

Premier Dalton McGuintyOntario, Canada Premier Dalton McGuinty today announced that being caught driving 50km/h (31 MPH) over the speed limit will automatically trigger "street racing" penalties -- even if the accused motorist is driving alone on an otherwise empty road. The change in definition will, in effect, turn ordinary speeding into an offense that can carry a $10,000 (US $9305) fine and up to six months in jail, making it one of the most expensive traffic tickets in North America.

"If you choose to break the law, we consider you a threat to our public safety and you're going to face stiff penalties," McGuinty said in a statement.

In June, McGuinty cited the importance of combating the "organized crime" of street racing as he urged passage of the Safer Roads for a Safer Ontario Act which created the $10,000 penalty. The change in definition also means that the word of a police officer is all that it takes to confiscate a car and driver's license for at least seven days.

"There is no appeal from, or right to be heard before, a vehicle detention, driver's license suspension or vehicle impoundment under [the street racing] subsection," the Safer Roads Act states.

McGuinty also announced a proposal to hire 55 new traffic police officers and purchase a high-tech surveillance airplane in an attempt to rack up several of the expensive new fines.




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