Flawed Logic Impedes Animal Welfare Act Sentencing

New Zealand Law Journal, Vol. 2004, p. 357

8 Pages Posted: 31 Jul 2006

See all articles by Peter Sankoff

Peter Sankoff

University of Alberta - Faculty of Law


Less than five years ago, Parliamentarians from all parties met to congratulate themselves on the occasion of having unanimously passed the Animal Welfare Act 1999, New Zealand's first attempt to modernize the law governing the humane treatment of animals. While the legislation is not without its flaws, it was undoubtedly a major step forward for New Zealand's animal welfare policies. Nearly five years into the new regime, it appears that at least one major aspect of the reform has been rendered unsuccessful, however. Changes designed to increase sentences handed down for significant cruelty against animals have been mostly ineffective. It is submitted that the reason for this failure is a flawed form of reasoning being applied in the sentencing for these offences. This article will consider how an inappropriate judicial attitude to crimes against animals has impeded Parliament's objective of bumping up the penalties for these offences.Please enter abstract text here.

Keywords: animal, cruelty, sentencing, welfare, punishment

Suggested Citation

Sankoff, Peter, Flawed Logic Impedes Animal Welfare Act Sentencing. New Zealand Law Journal, Vol. 2004, p. 357, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=920161

Peter Sankoff (Contact Author)

University of Alberta - Faculty of Law ( email )

Edmonton, Alberta T6G 2H5

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