Wednesday, 16 September 2020.
Earlier today I was formally advised of a raid conducted by the NSW RSPCA and NSW Police on a property in the Copeton Dam area, regarding possible breaches of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1979 (NSW).
The property, which contains a commercial animal breeding facility, has been the subject of monitoring by authorities for some time.
I strongly condemn any acts of cruelty perpetrated against animals, whether they be pets, native animals or livestock. Any person in breach of our State’s robust animal welfare laws should have the book thrown at them and will be prosecuted.
The fact that a potential rogue operator has been the subject of investigation and a raid today is evidence that the NSW authorities take these matters incredibly seriously and have the legislative tools they need to take decisive action.
The issue of cruelty towards companion animals who may be suffering due to illegal breeding practices is one that is close to my heart. One of my first actions in Parliament as the Member for the Northern Tablelands was to Chair the Joint Select Committee on Companion Animals Breeding Practices. This was instrumental in bringing in new protections for breeding animals and tracing systems for puppies to weed out any illegal breeding.
I urge anyone who is aware of illegal activity in relation to the commercial breeding of animals to report them immediately to the appropriate authorities for investigation.
As the raid today on the property is the subject of an ongoing investigation it would be inappropriate for me to comment on the specifics of the case at this point in time, as it could potentially jeopardise future prosecution action.
I will have more to say on this matter in due course.