Enforcement – the conundrum at the heart of animal welfare policy?

‘The independent review of the prosecution activity of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals’ by Stephen Wooler CB

Monday 27 April 2015 at 6pm, at Doughty Street Chambers, London

ALAW is pleased to host this seminar and discussion around the enforcement regime for animal cruelty offences, including an in-depth look at the Wooler review. Mike Radford will discuss the implications of the review, the RSPCA’s response and the possible landscape for the future prosecution of animal cruelty offences. He will be joined (subject to court commitments) by barrister, Iain O’Donnell, who frequently acts in RSPCA prosecutions.

Mike RadfordMike Radford is Reader in Law at the University of Aberdeen. Having established in 1992 the first animal welfare course in a UK law school, he is still waiting (with a handful of notable exceptions) for the rest of legal academia to catch up. In the meantime, he has been extensively involved in the development of animal welfare law and policy.

He is presently a trustee of Dogs Trust, the Universities Federation for Animal Welfare, and the Humane Slaughter Association. Mike is a visiting lecturer at Cambridge, Edinburgh and Glasgow Vet Schools. His previous activities include acting as “critical friend” to the Wooler Report, 12 years as a trustee of the PDSA, and membership of the Companion Animal Welfare Council, the Dog Advisory Council, and the Science, Ethics and Law Board of the RCVS. He was a founder member of AWSELVA and (he thinks) ALAW.

Iain O'DonnellIain O’Donnell is a barrister at 1 Crown Office Row, who has a niche specialism in animal welfare: he frequently acts for the RSPCA in criminal, public and civil matters, almost all of which involve an element of veterinary law and the close consideration of the often-convoluted body of animal welfare legislation. Iain’s specialist criminal practice includes prosecuting for the RSPCA in animal cruelty cases.

He represented the RSPCA at all stages of the largest ever prosecution brought by the Society, RSPCA v Gray and others, which case resulted in multiple judicial reviews that set out the ambit and applicability of numerous sections of the Animal Welfare Act 2006. Iain has advised the RSPCA on various areas of policy in the past, including advising on its status as a charity and the extent of its powers as a private prosecutor.

To reserve a place at the above meeting please email [email protected]


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