Animal Torture One Step Closer to Becoming a Federal Felony
Certain types of animal cruelty would be a federal felony crime if a bipartisan bill becomes law.
According to an ABC News report, the Preventing Animal Cruelty and Torture (PACT) Act was passed by the House of Representatives on Tuesday afternoon.
Under the act, anyone who crushes, impales, burns, suffocates, drowns, or sexually exploits animals would be subject to up to seven years in prison.
The act expands a law from 2010, the report explains, which made making videos of "animal crushing" illegal. Those videos featured killing, mutilating, and torturing animals for entertainment, according another report by WESH-TV.
The bill was introduced by two Florida lawmakers: Rep. Ted Deutch (D) and Rep. Vern Buchanan (R).
"The torture of innocent animals is abhorrent and should be punished to the fullest extent of the law," Buchanan said in the report.
ABC's report indicates that a fact sheet for the bill reads, "any person to intentionally engage in animal crushing if the animals or animal crushing is in, substantially affects, or uses a means or facility of, interstate or foreign commerce."
This means that any local animal cruelty laws/enforcement would be impacted, as the law pertains to interstate activity.
Broome County currently has a registry in which people who are convicted of animal cruelty are listed. You can take a look at the registry here.