The Criminal Court number 12 of Valencia has sentenced a person to nine months in prison for a repeated crime of animal abuse . It is a sentence that will lead to the entry into prison of the accused, by accumulating previous convictions for the same reason.
The sentence was produced by prior agreement with the accusing parties, the Prosecutor’s Office and the protector Modepran and came after the accused was already in provisional prison for this cause.
It is a case that, at the time, caused quite a stir due to the large number of abused animals that were found. The proven facts go back to 2016 and tell that the accused was found on the first occasion twelve dogs (nine of the American Staffordshire Terrier breed and three of the Bulterrier breed, eight of them without a chip) after a neighborhood complaint.
It was found that the animals “presented a deplorable physical appearance, dirty, with signs of neglect and attention, with wounds and scars compatible with bites from other dogs, generalized dermatitis, with pustules, scabs and bacterial infections.
Said injuries and illnesses were deliberately ignored by the defendant, who did not provide the animals with any treatment or care, even having an open bottle of antifreeze at his home, from which the animals apparently drank. These dogs were seized from him. One of them eventually passed away. ‘ Today, all animals have new owners.
The recidivism occurred two months later when, in a new police intervention, a dog of the Bulterrier breed was found that had wounds on the face and neck. And for the third time, still in the same year 2016, when the police came to deliver the notification forbidding him to keep animals, it was found that he was trying to hide another animal, an American Staffordshire Terrier, also in a deplorable state . Described in the car as “high flea infestation and high stress and fear.”
Previously, the Provincial Court had established a pioneering measure, consisting of prohibiting the accused from owning dogs until the sentence was final.
The sentence has considered the aggravating factor of reiteration and the mitigating factors of mental disorder and undue delay .
Concern about the new Criminal Procedure Law
This sentence coincides in time with the concern expressed by seven animal rights associations throughout Spain, including Valencian Lawyers in Animal Defense have expressed their “concern” about the Draft Law on Criminal Procedure, which plans to radically change the current system that governs criminal proceedings.
“On the one hand, it eliminates the possibility of formulating the popular accusation in crimes that have social importance, such as those of mistreatment and animal abandonment, and crimes against fauna.
Also in others of singular relevance, such as human trafficking, crimes against foreigners, or terrorism. Regarding animals, there is a circumstance that in recent years the advances that have been made in relation to their protection have been achieved through popular and private accusations. Hence the importance of its continuity “.
On the other hand, “the possibility of formulating a private accusation to animal protection associations is also limited since they will not be considered as offended or harmed by the crimes even if they bear the expenses of abused or abandoned animals.”