Campaign to bring private prosecutions made by the RSPCA under the control of the CPS



    Posts : 6
    Join date : 2008-11-24


    Post  Stevie on Wed Dec 10, 2008 5:47 am

    every time the rspca prosecute its political, they should be serving improvement notices for cases that dont involve intentional cruelty, this case is a clear breach of conflict for the animal SS, they knew they would get lost of publicity for prosecuting a councillor, a very high profile case,so this equates to lots af donations nationally, every time they get a case reported in the press it pulls peoples heart strings and they pick up the phone and donate, bet they dont promote it now the conviction has been overturned.
    I wonder if they had costs awarded out of public funds for the magistrates court prosecution, if they did, shouldnt the rspca have to hnd these back now the verdict has been overturned ??????

    Posts : 4
    Join date : 2008-11-30


    Post  rspcaInsider on Tue Dec 09, 2008 12:08 pm

    An high profile case, mana from heaven, this is what the rspca pray for. Fourtunately for this guy he got his own post mortem, the rspca only do a pm when they are absolutely sure that they will get a conviction, the fact that they didnt do one in this case raises concerns, the quality of the evidence seems to have totally deteriorated in the crown court, must have had a friendly magistrate in the first court.
    The RSPCA havent realsised yet that they are harming thier reputation, many pet owners now support other welfare charities, if they have any sense they will abondon all but the certain cruelty cases, they are prosecuting too many cases that are borderline or solely for political or publicity reasons.
    As the judiciary and the politicians start realising this, the political feelings towards the good old rspca will change. farao
    Public Opinion
    Public Opinion

    Posts : 16
    Join date : 2008-11-14


    Post  Public Opinion on Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:47 am

    Find below extract from Petstreet.

    Since I set up PetStreet one recurring theme raised by members has been concern over the way the RSPCA operates. In short three issues predominate:-
    1. Tactless and overbearing inspectors.
    2. The politics of animal rights v animal welfare - what sort of organisation is the RSPCA?
    3. The way the RSPCA is allowed to prosecute people accused of cruelty.
    It is the third issue I want to address here because though few would doubt that the dogs mentioned above deserved protection, the way the RSPCA prosecutes cases is an issue that even some supporters of the RSPCA recognise is flawed.

    Last week a man called Paul Shotton and his wife Annette won their appeal against an animal cruelty conviction and sentence. The couple, from Fenton, were cleared of causing unnecessary suffering to their 13-year-old labrador Baron.

    Last November they received two-year conditional discharges and were banned from keeping dogs for the same period after being found guilty at North Staffordshire Magistrates´ Court. Councillor Shotton, who sits on Stoke-on-Trent City Council and is a former deputy elected mayor, was forced to stand down from the authority´s cabinet.

    But Judge Mark Eades, sitting with two magistrates at Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court, said evidence from veterinary pathologist Dr Udo Hetzel cast a new light on inferences from the first case.

    Like all stories there is more to this than meets the eye, and I need to find out more, but there is an increasing tide of opinion that believes that the RSPCA should not be allowed to mount these private prosecutions because they are not independently scrutinised. Instead they should work through an independent prosecuting authority - the Crown Prosecution Service. Isn´t that what the police do, so why are the RSPCA different?
    In Scotland there is no RSPCA. Instead there is the SSPCA who do not mount private prosecutions but leave it to the Scottish prosecution service. Most people think this is a much fairer system. Apparently there are 26 times more RSPCA prosecutions appealed to a higher Court than CPS prosecutions.

    All our regular members know that animal cruelty cases occur all the time and we need a strong RSPCA able to step in and help. But Is the RSPCA harming its own reputation by being able to mount its own prosecutions - almost being "judge and jury" in these types of case? Should the RSPCA concentrate on animal welfare and leave the prosecutions to an independent body? Mad

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