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Animal welfare
RSPCA to retain its right to bring prosecutions

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THE chief executive of the RSPCA says the charity is ‘extremely pleased’ that the Government continues to recognise the role it plays in investigating and prosecuting cases of animal cruelty and neglect.

Jeremy Cooper's comments followed publication of the Government's response to a report on the welfare of domestic pets by the House of Commons Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee (EFRACom), which last year had recommended that the RSPCA should ‘step back’ from bringing prosecutions under the Animal Welfare Act (VR, November 19, 2016, vol 179, p 500). The committee recommended that the charity should become a ‘specialist reporting authority’, continuing to investigate animal welfare cases, working with the police, but withdrawing from its role as prosecutor and instead allowing the Crown Prosecution Service to take over the responsibility.

Responding to the EFRACom's report on February 7, the Government rejected the suggestion that …

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