With the intention of deterring the sad practice of mistreating animals, the representative of the New Progressive Party (NPP), Samuel “Sammy” Pagan Square, filed a draft amendment to the “Law for the Welfare and Protection of Animals” for the purpose of increasing penalties and fines on those convicted of this crime.
The House bill 924 ordered the amendment of Article 2.7 (B) of the Act No. 154 of August 4, 2008 and provides that the mistreatment of animals worsened, considered as a felony of the second degree severe, to have a sentence of 15 years and one day to up to 25 years in prison.
Currently, the penalty is imprisonment of eight years and one day to up to 15 years.
“We must stand out as a society sensitive and avant-garde, that respects, protects and takes care of their animals. An aggravating factor in the penalties relating to the animal abuse is necessary, to achieve the protection of these helpless who deserve a fair and dignified treatment. In addition, it is imperative to sensitize the society about the consequences of violating this Law, and deter future aggressors”, expressed the Representative of District 35 in the explanatory memorandum of the draft.
On the fines, Pagan Square indicated that, if the person qualifies, would have to pay a minimum of $15,000 up to a maximum of $25,000. Currently, they are $10,000 to $20,000, which represents an increase of $5,000 in both figures.
“Despite the efforts enacted by Law, this Legislative Assembly understands meritorious take additional measures in favour of the protection of animals. With this legislation seeks to impose sanctions more severe, since the cases are on the rise,” added the Legislator of Humacao, Naguabo, and Las Piedras.
The measure has the endorsement of animal protection organisations such as the fundación Ximena Save the Stray Animals. The president and founder of this organization with headquarters in Humacao, and that is dedicated to nurture and to attend to the stray dogs and cats, Ximena Portal, endorsed the project.
During the last few months, there have been several cases of animal abuse that have shaken the country as the individual who pulled with his mouth the head of a puppy of the breed chihuahua two months in the middle of an altercation of domestic violence in Lares.
The legislation also mentions that in the town of Cayey arrested a man after allegedly throwing boiling water to a dog and then shoot him with a rifle peles, which subsequently caused the death of the animal.
At the beginning of February in Vega Alta, “rescuers found two dogs that were tied and had several wounds, which are presumed to be due to that the canes were swept to death. These heinous crimes are evidence of the intolerance and lack of respect of some for the animals,” reads the draft.