The Office of the Attorney General of the Nation announced, this November 20, the prosecution of two people who had omitted the duty of timely attention and care of their companion animals, thus causing them serious health effects. These are different cases that occurred in Cundinamarca and Valle del Cauca.
Animal damage in Valle del Cauca
In February 2018, an animal protection foundation recovered a two-year-old dog that, apparently, remained tied with a chain and in serious conditions of well-being, in the village of Villa Grande de Ginebra (Valle del Cauca).
According to the evidentiary material, the canine suffered a wound on the face that compromised soft tissues and his right eye. The veterinary diagnosis showed a high state of malnutrition, infested with parasites, anemia, severe otitis and fearful behavior.
For his alleged responsibility in not having paid due attention to the dog, José David Sanabria, his caretaker, was charged with the crime of animal abuse.
Death by omission in attention
Before a guarantee control judge, a woman was presented who would have caused the death of her dog, due to the terrible care conditions to which she was subjected. In that sense, she was charged with the crime of animal abuse.
In July 2018, the District Institute for Animal Protection and Welfare of Bogotá carried out an inspection visit to the property where the canine was staying, and found him in poor health. Reports indicated that she had body problems, alopecia, dehydration, and an ulcer in one of her eyes, among other physical difficulties.
Before the effort of the environmental authorities, the animal was able to recover; however, he was left with some sequels and died.
Legal consequences of animal abuse
For these cases, the resource of Law 1774 of January 6, 2016 is available. This document guarantees that the attitude between humans and animals is based on “respect, solidarity, compassion, ethics, justice, care, prevention of suffering , in the eradication of captivity and abandonment ”, quotes the document.
On the other hand, the well-being of living beings lies, in turn, in that their fork must comply with five minimum principles: that they do not suffer from hunger, thirst, physical discomfort or pain; that diseases are not caused by negligence or carelessness, that they are not subjected to fear or stress and that they can manifest their natural behavior.
According to article 4 of the Law, those who commit harmful acts that do not cause death or injury to the health and physical integrity of the animals will be sanctioned with a fine of 5 to 50 monthly legal minimum wages in force. Today, the figure ranges from 4,542,630 pesos to 45,426,300 pesos.
On the other hand, those who cause death or injuries that seriously impair their health or physical integrity of the animal may face prison terms between 12 and 36 months. In addition, they would face a special disability of one to three years for the exercise of profession, trade, trade or possession related to animals.
Faced with the fines, those who cause the damage described above must pay between 4,542,630 pesos and up to 54,511,560 pesos.
These would even be increased from half to three quarters if they are committed with the following aggravating factors:
– When one or more of the aforementioned conducts are perpetuated on a public road or place.
– Using unimpeachable or minors or in the presence of those.
– When sexual acts are committed with animals.
– When any of the crimes provided for in the previous articles is committed by a public servant or whoever performs public functions.