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Scotland to increase animal cruelty sentences to five years

Scotland has announced it will increase sentences for animal cruelty offences to 5 years over the next Parliamentary year.

The announcement was made in its 2017/18 Programme for Government, along with other animal welfare measures, including:

* A public information campaign on the risks of buying puppies online and rehoming dogs from abraod;
* Amending the Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act 2006 to increase sentences for animal cruelty offences to a maximum of 5 years in the most serious cases;
* Introducing fixed penalty notices for less serious animal cruelty offences;
* Changes to the current system of registration and licensing of animal sanctuaries and rehoming centres which will see a move away from local authority inspection towards independent accreditation;
* Changes to the existing licensing regime for breeders of dogs, cats and rabbits;
* A consultation on the introduction of CCTV in Scottish abattoirs;
* Progression of the Wild Animals in Travelling Circuses Bill, which will ban the use of wild animals in travelling circuses in Scotland.
* New licensing requirements for wild and domestic animals used in other types of public performances and displays; and,
* Progression of Lord Bonomy and Professor Poustie’s recommendations from earlier this year around improvements to the law on foxhunting and penalties for wildlife crime, respectively.

You can read the report in full here: http://www.gov.scot/Resource/0052/00524214.pdf.

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