According to the new law which Donald Trump, the current US president has recently signed, cruelty to animals will now be considered a federal crime.
The Preventing Animal Cruelty and Torture Act is a bi-partisan initiative which prohibits intentional burning, drowning, crushing, suffocating or any other severe harm to living non-human mammals, birds, reptiles or amphibians.
This law also bans any photography, motion picture, video, and an electronic or a digital image that shows animal cruelty.
Violation of the law will lead to a fine, prison time of seven years or the both.
Animal Protection Is now Bound by Law
This new measure was first introduced in the House by Ted Deutch and Vern Buchanan and moved through the Senate by Richard Blumenthal and Patrick J. Toomey.
According to animal activists, a federal law is pivotal, although every state already has laws that criminalize animal cruelty.
They stated that a lack of this federal law makes it harder to prosecute cases which span through states or jurisdictions.
Kitty Block, president and CEO of the Humane Society of the US, stated that animals deserve high level protection. She’s glad that the PACT Act has finally been made a law and that animal torture has no place in our society and should be considered a crime.
Thanks to this new law, Block emphasizes, this has been achieved.
Together with Senator Toomey, they’ve worked for years to make sure this torture is banned once and for all.
Endorsed & Supported by Numerous Sides
This new law was also endorsed by law enforcement groups like the Fraternal Order of Police and the National Sheriffs’ Association that claim there’s a connection between violence against people and animal cruelty.
This decision is an expansion of a 2010 law which the former president Barack Obama signed. It banned videos showing animal abuse.
Now, the intentional cruelty seen in videos is considered a felony offense.
Donald Trump said at the signing ceremony that ‘it is important that we combat these heinous and sadistic acts of cruelty which are totally unacceptable in a civilized society.”
The bill was passed unanimously by a vote voice in the House this October and by the Senate in November.
According to the VP of field services at the Humane Rescue Alliance, Chris Schindler, the law would be especially vital for the District of Columbia where cases of cruelty often include several jurisdictions and sometimes, federal property.
He also explained that their officers are investigating thousands of animal cruelty cases on a yearly basis; however, they’ve not been able to really bring justice for these animals in case of multiple jurisdictions.
Nevertheless, this bill doesn’t apply to those who slaughter animals for food or people who trap, hunt or fish.