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Petition targets attacks on animals
7:40am Thursday 5th July 2012 in News
A GROUP of women have launched a campaign demanding that stronger punishments are dished out to animal attackers.
Four men were arrested and all released without charge following a sick attack on Shetland Pony Wizz, in Stifford Clays last May, which led to its death.
Now there are calls for changes in the law that will see those who carry out such attacks receive much stronger punishments.
Currently, the Animal Welfare Act of 2006 states those who carry out attacks on animals can only be sentenced to a maximum of six months in prison, while the Criminal Damage Act 1971 offers only a maximum ten year sentence to anyone who kills an animal belonging to another person.
Following the horrific attack on Wizz, a group of local women have got together and launched an appeal to have the law changed.
Ockendon Tory councillor Lynn Carr, who has worked in the equine industry all her life, said: “After that attack in Stifford and another attack in Upminster on October 30, we formed a group.
“The two Acts need to be reviewed.
“There needs to be harsher sentencing, so that the punishment meets the crime.
“The police do all they can, but these laws don’t help.
“Enough is enough, we want something done.
“We’re letting down a wonderful animal that has done so much for us.”
The group, called Equal, which stands for Equine Quorum for Unified Animal Law, consists of a number of women, including Lynn, who lives in Ockendon, Maria Harley, from South Ockendon, Fiona Marquis, from Upminster, and Nathalie White.
They added that attacks on horses are often sexual and always brutal.
Maria, a horse owner herself, said: “People don’t realise what’s going on. Unless we bring it into the open, nothing will be done about it.”
Equal need 100,000 signatures to get the House of Commons to debate the two Acts.
If you would like to sign the petition, go to epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/34320.