Animal Cruelty Would Become Federal Felony Under Proposed Bill

Acts of animal cruelty would become a federal felony under a bill that was recently reintroduced by two Florida congressmen.

The proposed bill, titled The Preventing Animal Cruelty and Torture Act, or PACT ACT, would prohibit gruesome acts of violence toward animals, including “crushing, burning, drowning, suffocating, impaling or otherwise subjecting animals to serious bodily harm,” according to The Herald Tribune.

Similar legislation was passed in 2010, the newspaper reported, but only made it illegal to share and create videos of “animal crushing” around the internet. The acts leading up to the vicious videos remained legal under federal law.

The PACT bill was introduced by Republican Rep. Vern Buchanan, of Longboat Key, and Democrat Rep. Ted Deutsch, of Boca Raton. Anyone convicted would face up to seven years in prison, fines and other felony charges.

“The torture of innocent animals is abhorrent and should be punished to the fullest extent of the law,” Buchanan said on Twitter. “Protecting animals from cruelty is a top priority for me and I look forward to working with Democratic @RepTedDeutch on this important issue.”

According to The Orlando Sentinel, the bill was passed twice before in the U.S. Senate, but was blocked in the House by former Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte, R-Va.

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