The office of Public Safety Minister Vic Toews says it is unacceptable that inadmissible foreign nationals are able to get criminal record suspensions.
The office says it is moving to ensure people without status in Canada cannot use what it considers a loophole in the law to abuse Canada's immigration system.
Raed Jaser, 35, of Toronto, and Chiheb Esseghaier, 30, of Montreal, face terrorism-related charges for allegedly plotting to derail a Via passenger train.
Jaser came to Canada with his family as a teenager in 1993 and ran into trouble with the law, but apparently obtained a criminal pardon, now known as a record suspension.
That allowed him to remain in Canada and eventually obtain landed immigrant status.