The Fight Against the Holocaust of Small Animals | How Hong Kong Compares with the Globe



“…The GREATNESS of a nation and its MORAL PROGRESS can be judged by the way its animals are treated…”

– Mahatma Gandhi


The current wholesale tried homicide of over 30 small animals in Hong Kong by two people has rocked the metropolis after the Department of Justice (“DoJ”) decides to not press costs in opposition to the perpetrators. In a closely criticized transfer, many have famous that life sentences would have been handed out had the victims in the case been human beings.

The current incident has shine a light-weight on the metropolis’s growing older animal safety legal guidelines as being antiquated. At current, the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Ordinance (Cap.169) has remained one of the few legislations regarding animal welfare.

Global Animal Rights Compare

“If humans killed each other at the same rate that we kill animals, we’d be extinct in 17 days.”

– The Humane League

In order for us to find whether or not current animal safety legal guidelines are sufficient, one ought to examine Hong Kong’s regime with the relaxation of the globe, main jurisdictional highlights as follows:

  1. The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (“HKSAR”)

    Under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animal Ordinance, description of the merciless acts in opposition to animals below part 3 has largely remained unchanged. The most penalty below part 3 was raised significantly to 3 years’ imprisonment and a nice of HK$200,000.

    That mentioned, as famous herein above, one of the biggest shortcomings just lately cited in Hong Kong is her lack of legal guidelines that focus particularly on animal welfare. The Secretary for Justice v. Fung Chi Hoi stays the main judgment with the Court of Appeal declining to put down any sentencing tariff or scale of sentence for offence in opposition to small animals.

    Government has held a public session on its proposals to boost animal welfare in Hong Kong between twenty sixth April and thirty first July 2019 with the plan to amend the laws.

  2. People’s Republic of China (“PRC”)

    On 24 February 2020, the Standing Committee of China’s National People’s Congress (“NPCSC”) promulgated the “Decision on Completely Prohibiting the Illegal Wildlife Trade, Eliminating the Bad Habit of Indiscriminately Eating Wild Animals, and Truly Ensuring the Health and Safety of the People”.

    The regulation strictly prohibit the looking, buying and selling, captive-bred and transportation of terrestrial wild animals for consumption after China got here below scrutiny for consumption of unique / endangered species.

    The amendments additionally prohibit the consumption of captive-bred wild animals. Illegal wildlife commerce enforcement and punishment are additionally escalated to the highest stage.

    Further, Shenzhen turned the first PRC metropolis to ban the consumption of canine and cats meat. According to the Humane Society International (“HIS”), at least 30 million canine being slaughtered in Asia yearly. The HIS acknowledged:

    “This ban also responds to the demand and spirit of human civilization.”

    It stays to be seen whether or not surrounding areas corresponding to Cambodia, Indonesia and Vietnam will comply with China’s instance.

  3. The United Kingdom (“UK” or “England”)

    The Animal Welfare (Service Animals) 2019 has strengthened the functionality of the Animal Welfare Act 2006 to deal with offenders inflicting ‘unnecessary suffering’ to an animal on obligation in public service. The ‘Finn’s Law’ implies that anybody injured by an animal on obligation can not rely as a defence. As for wildlife, the Ivory Act 2018 launched a near-total ban on dealing in gadgets containing ivory.

    With regards to wild animals inside the UK, numerous items of laws at nationwide and European Union (“EU”) ranges present a “patchwork” fashion protecting framework which is overly ripe for revision.

  4. The United States of America (“USA”)

    The Preventing Animal Cruelty and Torture Act (“PACT”), unanimously handed by Congress in November 2019, makes it a federal crime to have interaction in animal crushing. At the state stage, the following developments are of be aware:

    4.1 State of California

    The state of California handed Proposition 12 again in November 2018. It units particular minimal house necessities for animals raised for meals, thus successfully banning cages for laying hens, sow stalls, and crates for calves. California handed the Circus Cruelty Prevention Act in May 2019 outlawing the use of wild animals in circuses. In October 2019, California turned the first state to ban the sale of fur merchandise which can come into pressure on 1 January 2023. California and Maryland additionally handed laws prohibiting pet shops from sourcing animals from industrial breeders.

    4.2 State of Massachusetts

    Massachusetts additionally handed two Protect Animal Welfare and Safety (“PAWS”) Acts: the first in 2014 established an animal welfare process pressure, whereas PAWS II goals to enhance cross-reporting of animal cruelty to regulation enforcement businesses, prevents the computerized euthanasia of animals confiscated from the animal preventing trade; and modernizes the state’s prohibitions in opposition to animal sexual abuse.

    4.3 State of Michigan

    In November 2019, Michigan handed Senate Bill 0174, which mandates cage-free situations for egg-laying hens and prohibits the sale of non-cage-free eggs by December 2024.

  5. The Commonwealth of Australia (“Australia”)

    At the nationwide stage, the Government launched a ban on testing beauty merchandise on animals. The ban was applied in July 2020. Furthermore, new measures and penalties have been introduced in May 2018 by means of amendments to the Australian Meat and Livestock Industry Act 1997 and the Export Control Act 1982, which introduce penalties for reside exporters who breach animal welfare requirements.


“Do you know why most survivors of the Holocaust are vegan? It’s because they know what it’s like to be treated like an animal.”

– Chuck Palahniuk

All in all, we are able to see that there’s nonetheless vital room for enchancment of animal rights associated legal guidelines in Hong Kong. Hong Kong ought to due to this fact think about:

  1. Making animal rights legal guidelines extra proactive and obligation oriented.
  2. Address animal welfare.
  3. Need for Special Law Enforcement Taskforce.

This article is co-authored by Joshua Chu from ONC Lawyers