Overview of the Military Police

The Military Police provide a variety of operational, law enforcement, investigative and security services at Bases and Units across Canada and throughout the world, wherever the Canadian Armed Forces serve.

There are currently more than 2,000 Military Police members in the Canadian Armed Forces, approximately 1,400 of whom are sworn peace officers. They exercise policing jurisdiction within the Forces, and over all persons on DND property. The remaining 650 Military Police are members of the Reserve Force (who are usually not sworn peace officers).

Military Police form an integral part of the military justice system in much the same way civilian police act within the civil and criminal justice system. They routinely train and work with their civilian counterparts in the provision of police and security services to the Canadian Forces and the Department of National Defence.

Members of the Military Police are appointed under regulations for the purposes of National Defence Act section 156 and, as such, are awarded certain powers in order to fulfill their policing duties. For example, Military Police have the power to arrest, detain, and search without regard to rank.

The Criminal Code of Canada recognizes Military Police members as peace officers. They have the same powers of search, seizure and arrest as civilian police and they can lay charges in civilian criminal courts. Military Police members posted to the Canadian Forces National Investigation Service additionally can lay charges under the Code of Service Discipline of the National Defence Act (an authority otherwise reserved to the military chain of command).

For additional information about the Military Police, please see the Canadian Forces Provost Marshal website.

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