Bill Would Make Animal Cruelty a Federal Crime

The Preventing Animal Cruelty and Torture Act would amend the federal criminal code to prohibit intentional animal cruelty acts, including burning, drowning, impaling, sexual exploitation, or others that cause serious bodily harm to animals.
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Proposed legislation would crack down on animal abusers by making animal cruelty a felony nationwide.

Currently all 50 states have laws on the books that classify animal cruelty crimes as felonies and misdemeanors that carry various penalties. Those laws allow law enforcement to enforce the statutes within their own jurisdictions but do not necessarily discourage animal cruelty suspects from crossing state lines where penalties might be less severe or where they could avoid prosecution altogether.

Introduced Jan. 23 by Representatives Vern Buchanan (R-FL) and Ted Deutch (D-FL), the Preventing Animal Cruelty and Torture Act would amend the federal criminal code to prohibit intentional animal cruelty acts, including burning, drowning, impaling, sexual exploitation, or others that cause serious bodily harm to animals. If passed, those convicted would face federal felony charges, fines, and up to seven years in prison.

Deutch said the bill lends common sense to anti-cruelty law enforcement

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Written by:

Pat Raia is a veteran journalist who enjoys covering equine welfare, industry, and news. In her spare time, she enjoys riding her Tennessee Walking Horse, Sonny.

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