2023 assessment at customs | Hundreds of weapons seized between Quebec and the United States

Nearly 900 firearms were seized this year at the 87 customs crossing points between Quebec and the United States, an increase of 5% in one year. Significant quantities of opioids and narcotics were also intercepted, show figures from the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA).

This is what the Quebec section of the federal organization revealed in an annual report published on its website this Tuesday. The data presented ranges from 1er January to October 31, 2023, which means that two months of the year are not taken into account.

We learn that “876 firearms, weapons and weapon parts” have been captured between Quebec and the United States since the start of 2023, which represents an increase of 5% compared to 2022.

Added to this are also 127 “prohibited devices” identified by customs officials. An example: seven fuel filters that could be used as silent moderators for weapons were found in Saint-Bernard-de-Lacolle on April 7.

The CBSA also confirms having carried out 4,475 drug confiscations in total, a relatively stable figure compared to last year (4,469). These operations made it possible to recover 1,113 kilograms of opioids, 175 kilograms of cocaine as well as 33 kilograms of methamphetamine.

Montreal often involved


Customs at Montreal-Trudeau airport

Several events related to narcotics have also occurred in the Montreal region. On August 24, in particular, 110 kilograms of cannabis intended for export were reported by agents at the Montreal-Trudeau airport. According to the authorities, the drugs were then supposed to go to the Netherlands.

Two “opium seizures” were also made at the beginning of May by the Montreal Maritime and Rail Service, for a total of 403 kilograms, using a detector dog.

More recently, on September 12, a sum of $106,500 in “likely criminal” money was also collected at the Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport. In total, the authorities claim to have intercepted five million dollars in the last year, between Quebec and the United States.

A little more than 540 seizures of “luxury goods” were also made in 2023 for a value of 2.9 million, up 15% over one year. In Montreal, undeclared luxury items worth nearly $134,000, including two handbags worth $40,740, were identified in early September.

It must be said that the number of travelers welcomed to Quebec from the United States has exploded this year, due to the end of the COVID-19 crisis. In 2023, the CBSA lists 11.6 million international travelers for the province alone, a significant jump of 45% compared to 2022. During the same period, some 39,540 asylum applications were processed in the province.

Quebec has a total of 87 border service points with the United States, including 32 land and nine maritime, but also six railway stations, 25 airports and an international postal center. These places are spread over approximately 813 kilometers of common border, the longest in Canada.

Learn more

  • 427,008
    This is the number of commercial truck crossings recorded in Quebec since the start of the year. There are also 7.6 million postal packages and 1.6 million commercial shipments.


    38.2 million
    This is the amount of money that was recovered in unpaid duties and taxes by the Division of Trade Operations (DOLEC) during 257 trade audits.


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