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Latest News (9 October 2014): We are pleased to announce that there have been new developments to animal abuse charges under the Animals and Birds Act. First time offenders of animal cruelty could be fined up to $15,000, jailed up to 18 months or both. Offenders who are in animal-related businesses will face heftier penalties for animal cruelty up to $40,000 in fines or jail, not exceeding two years or both.

More than a year after the Animal Welfare Legislation Review Committee (AWLRC) submitted their recommendations on animal welfare to the Government, Members of Parliament tabled a bill to amend the Animals and Birds Act on October 7 2014 which included harsher penalties for those convicted of acts of animal cruelty.

You can read more about this development here.

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The Animals and Birds Act can be found here.

In Singapore it is a crime to be cruel to an animal. Those found guilty can be jailed up to one year or fined up to $10,000 or both. In 1994, due to the rise in reported abuse cases, the SPCA wrote to the Ministry of National Development to request for increases in penalties. We felt the penalties ($500 fine or up to 6 month’s imprisonment or both) at that time were not sufficient deterrents. In 2002, following a review, an increase in the penalties was announced (up to $10,000 fine or one year’s imprisonment or both). Abandonment was also made an offence and subject to the same penalties.

In 2006, SPCA was nominated a resource of the Community Court, which handles animal abuse cases. Our input has been sought on several occasions.

 

SPCA submits paper to the Ministry of National Development (MND) for Legislation Change

In December 2011, SPCA submitted a proposal for legislative reform (Animals and Birds Act, Part IV, the ‘Prevention of Cruelty to Animals’ sections 42 to 44) to the Ministry of National Development and apart from proposing increased penalties for existing offences based on cruelty, we are proposing that failure to take care of the welfare of pets should also amount to an offence and be punishable as such. Reports of alleged cruelty to animals have increased – in the last decade they have doubled. Presently we are receiving 85 reports on average per month. Coupled with the increased number of reported pet neglect cases, we have a more aware public who does not hesitate to vocalise or express their opinions on animal cruelty issues, whether directly to the SPCA or through media/online avenues.

Over the past 27 years, the SPCA has recorded over 40 cases of animal cruelty prosecutions. In most of the police cases, we have assisted through meeting up with the police at the scene, taking the animal/s for veterinary consultation/providing a veterinary report or bringing the dead animals to the AVA for an official post-mortem. We have followed up with the police in many of these cases with our reports or opinions to ensure that they were prosecuted.

Click here to read the full proposal.