New animal cruelty laws have been passed in Australia that will see abusers facing $44,000 in fines and a year behind bars.
The Parliament of New South Wales recently voted in favour of an amendment bill to the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, seeing it pass through the legislative council and into law.
As reported by 7News, offenders found guilty of animal cruelty will face a maximum fine of $44,000 and 12 months in jail. For aggravated cruelty, people could face fines of $110,000 and two years behind bars.
Those who fail to provide adequate food or shelter for their animals could also endure penalties of up to $16,500 and six months in jail. For businesses, it could be as much as an $82,500 fine. As for corporations found guilty of acts of animal cruelty, the fines surge to as high as $220,000 and $550,000 for each act.
The bill passed in the NSW Parliament on Thursday night, March 18. Agriculture Minister Adam Marshall backed the bill, saying its heftier fines and jail time are befitting of the crimes.
In a statement, he said, ‘These changes will see an up-to eight-fold increase in financial penalties and jail time for grubs who would hurt or fail to adequately care for animals.’
Marshall added, ‘The bill simply underscores that animal cruelty is already unacceptable in NSW, and brings down a harsh suite of penalties on those who fall foul of our robust laws.’
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