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Treaty between the Government of Canada and the Government of the Republic of Venezuela on the Serving of Penal Sentences

E102463 - CTS 1996 No. 2


DESIRING to improve the administration of justice and to facilitate the social rehabilitation of offenders by allowing them to serve their sentences in the country of which they are citizens,

AGREE to conclude a Treaty for the Serving of Penal Sentences:


  1. Sentences imposed in the Republic of Venezuela on Canadian citizens may be served in Canada in penal institutions or under the supervision of Canadian authorities in accordance with the provisions of this Treaty.
  2. Sentences imposed in Canada on Venezuelan citizens may be served in Venezuela in penal institutions or under the supervision of Venezuelan authorities in accordance with the provisions of this Treaty.


For the purposes of this Treaty:

  1. "Sentencing State" means the Party from which the offender is to be transferred;
  2. "Receiving State" means the Party to which the offender is to be transferred; and
  3. "offender" means a person who, in the territory of either Party, has been sentenced either to imprisonment or to a term of conditional release or any other form of supervision.


This Treaty shall apply under the following conditions:

  1. that the offence for which the offender was sentenced is one which would be punishable as a crime in the Receiving State. For this purpose, no account shall be taken of differences of terminology or of those that have no bearing on the nature of the offence;
  2. that the offender be a citizen of the Receiving State;
  3. that the offender has not been convicted of a military offence;
  4. that at least six months of the offender's sentence remain to be served at the time of the petition;
  5. that no proceeding by way of appeal or of collateral attack upon the offender's conviction or sentence is pending in the Sentencing State and that the prescribed time for appeal of the offender's conviction or sentence has expired; and
  6. that the Receiving State shall be bound by the legal nature of the sentence as determined by the Sentencing State. If, however, the sentence is by its nature unenforceable in the Receiving State, that State may adapt the sentence to the sentence prescribed by its own law for a similar offence.


Each party shall designate an authority to carry out the provisions of this Treaty.


  1. The Receiving State and the Sentencing State shall retain absolute discretion to refuse the transfer of an offender.
  2. The request for transfer may be made by the Sentencing State or the Receiving State. In either case, the offender must have initiated or consented to the request, in writing. The request for transfer shall be made through the diplomatic channel.
  3. When either State does not approve, for whatever reason, the transfer of an offender, it shall communicate this decision to the other without delay.
  4. If the requested State approves the transfer of the offender, it shall communicate its approval to the requesting State.
  5. The transfer of the offender shall take place at a place agreed to by both Parties in the presence of a member of the diplomatic staff of the Receiving State.
  6. The Receiving State shall be responsible for the custody and transport of the offender to the prison or place where the sentence shall be completed from the time that the offender is received by the authorized person of the Receiving State, and in each case, as necessary, the Receiving State shall request the cooperation of third countries for transit of the offender through their territories. In special cases, by agreement between the respective authorities of both Parties, the Sentencing State shall assist in said requests made by the Receiving State.
  7. In making their decision concerning the transfer of the offender, each Party shall consider all factors that may contribute to the offender's rehabilitation.
  8. The Sentencing State shall furnish to the Receiving State a certified copy of the judgment convicting the offender, and full information about the duration of the sentence and about the length of the sentence remaining to be served, including any pre-trial detention and remission of sentence granted. The Sentencing State shall provide any additional information which may help the responsible authority of the Receiving State to determine a treatment program for the offender's social rehabilitation. The Receiving State may request any additional information regarding the offender to enable it to carry out the provisions of this Treaty. The above information shall be translated into an official language of the Receiving State and duly authenticated.
  9. Before the transfer, the Sentencing State shall afford an opportunity to the Receiving State, if it so desires, to verify through an officer designated of the Receiving State, that the offender's consent to the transfer has been given voluntarily and with full knowledge of the legal consequences thereof.
  10. The Receiving State shall be responsible for expenses incurred by it in the transfer of the offender from the time when the offender passes into its custody and in the completion of the sentence.
  11. Each Party shall explain the content of the present Treaty to any offender to whom it may apply.


  1. An offender transferred for execution of a sentence under this Treaty may not again be detained, tried or sentenced in the Receiving State for the same offence upon which the sentence to be executed is based.
  2. Under no circumstances may the sentence handed down by the Sentencing State be increased by the Receiving State.
  3. The Sentencing State shall retain the right to pardon, grant amnesty or review a judgment relating to the offender, of applicable. The Receiving State, immediately upon receiving notification of such pardon, amnesty or review of judgment shall take all steps necessary to ensure that the decision of the Sentencing State is carried out.
  4. Except as otherwise provided in this Treaty, the completion of a transferred offender's sentence shall be carried out according to the laws and procedures of the Receiving State.
  5. On written request by the Sentencing State, the Receiving State shall provide information regarding compliance with the sentence.


Insofar as it is applicable and in conformity with the internal laws of both Parties, the present Treaty may be applied to young offenders. The transfer must be authorized by the legal representative.


In order to carry out the purposes of this Treaty, each Party shall take the necessary legislative measures and shall establish adequate administrative procedures so that the sentences imposed shall have legal effect with their respective territories.


  1. This Treaty shall enter into force on the first day of the second month after the date on which the contracting Parties have notified each other in writing and by the diplomatic channel that their respective domestic legal requirements have been met.
  2. This Treaty shall remain in force for three years and shall be automatically renewed for additional periods of three years, unless one of the Parties gives written notice to the other of its intention to terminate the Treaty at least six months prior to the expiration of any three-year period.

DONE in duplicate, in the English, French and Spanish languages, each version being equally authentic, at Caracas, this 24th day of January, 1994.

Russell H. Davidson

Fernando Ochoa Antich

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