Skip to Content

Session Law

2006

Jump to:

Chapter 434 AN ACT RELATIVE TO PENALTIES FOR ANIMAL FIGHTING.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same as follows:

SECTION 1. Section 77 of chapter 272 of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2004 Official Edition, is hereby amended by striking out, in lines 26 to 28, inclusive, the words “may, after an appropriate hearing to determine the defendant’s fitness for continued custody of the abused animal, be ordered to surrender or” and inserting in place thereof the following word:- shall.

SECTION 2. Section 88 of said chapter 272, as so appearing, is hereby amended by striking out, in lines 5 and 6, the words “or trained for fighting” and inserting in place thereof the following words:- , owned, possessed, trained, bred, loaned, sold, exported or otherwise transferred in violation of section 94.

SECTION 3. Said section 88 of said chapter 272, as so appearing, is hereby further amended by striking out the words “birds, dogs or other animals”, in lines 13 and 14, and inserting in place thereof the following words:- such animals and all paraphernalia, implements, equipment or other property used or employed, or intended to be used or employed, in violation of section 94.

SECTION 4. Said section 88 of said chapter 272, as so appearing, is hereby further amended by striking out, in lines 14 to 16, inclusive, the words “at any such exhibition or where preparations for such exhibition are being made, or where birds, dogs or other animals are kept or trained for fighting”.

SECTION 5. Said chapter 272 is hereby further amended by striking out section 89, as so appearing, and inserting in place thereof the following section:-

Section 89. Any officer authorized to serve criminal process, or any special police officer duly appointed by the colonel of the state police at the request of the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, or any municipal officer involved with animal control may, without a warrant, enter any place or building in which there is an exhibition of any fighting birds, dogs or other animals, preparations are being made for such an exhibition, or birds, dogs or other animals are owned, possessed, kept, trained, bred, loaned, sold, exported or otherwise transferred in violation of section 94. Any such officer may arrest all persons there present and take possession of and remove from the place of seizure such animals there found in violation of said section 94, and hold the same in custody subject to the order of court as hereinafter provided.

SECTION 6. Said chapter 272 is hereby further amended by striking out section 91, as so appearing, and inserting in place thereof the following section:-

Section 91. After seizure and removal of animals or property used or employed, or intended to be used or employed, in violation of section 94, application shall be made to a district court for a decree of forfeiture of the animals or property. If, after hearing on the application, notice thereof having been previously given as the court orders, it shall be found that the animals, at the time of seizure, were engaged, or were intended to be engaged, in fighting at an exhibition thereof or the animals were owned, possessed, kept, trained, bred, loaned, sold, exported or otherwise transferred in violation of section 94, such animals shall be adjudged forfeited and the court shall thereupon, unless an appeal is taken as provided in the following section, issue an order for killing them. The order shall be directed to any officer authorized to serve criminal process and the officer receiving such order shall cause the animals to be killed within 24 hours thereafter. Animals or property seized as hereinbefore provided, which are not adjudged forfeited, shall be delivered to the owner or person entitled to the possession thereof. Any person shall be allowed to appear as claimant in the proceeding upon the application for a decree of forfeiture.

SECTION 7. Said chapter 272 is hereby further amended by striking out section 94, as so appearing, and inserting in place thereof the following section:-

Section 94. Whoever: (i) owns, possesses, keeps or trains any bird, dog or other animal, with the intent that it shall be engaged in an exhibition of fighting; (ii) establishes or promotes an exhibition of the fighting of any birds, dogs or other animals; (iii) loans, sells, exports or otherwise transfers any bird, dog or other animal for the purpose of animal fighting; or (iv) owns, possesses or keeps any bird, dog or other animal for the purpose of breeding such animal with the intent that its offspring be used for animal fighting shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for not more than 5 years or in the house of correction for not more than 1 year, or by a fine of not more than $1,000 or by both such fine and imprisonment.

Approved January 3, 2007.


Error