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Andrew Mitchell MP pledges to help stop pets being stolen

The Royal Town’s MP has pledged his support to the campaign by the Stolen and Missing Pet Alliance (Sampa) to amend the 1968 Theft Act to reclassify Pet Theft as a specific crime in its own right and improve the Sentencing Guidelines.

The matter drew national attention when an e-petition created by Dr Daniel Allen, a Research Fellow at Keele University achieved 100,000 signatures in just four months and is heavily supported within the Royal Town.
Andrew Mitchell visited the #PetTheftReform drop-in to find out more and was shocked to learn that mushrooms and wild animals receive protection and are mentioned in the Theft Act but not domestic pets which are regarded as “family”.

Currently, the theft of a much-loved family pet is lumped in with general theft of possessions and most pet theft attracts the lowest possible sentencing brackets. Only recently, four dog thieves were given suspended sentences in Lincolnshire, the worst hotspot for dog theft in the country.

Announcing his support for the campaign, Andrew said:
“Pets are cherished members of the family, so I entirely agree that to steal one from a loving home is a particularly vicious crime. The law as it stands leaves pet owners totally exposed to extortion and the oft-quoted seven-year maximum sentence has never been awarded in a pet theft case.

“Many of us in the Royal Town are deeply attached to our pets and I look forward to working with SAMPA to ensure that such cruelty to animals and indeed to people is dealt with through proper legal sanction.”

Photo: Andrew Mitchell MP at the #PetTheftReform drop-in.

Andrew Mitchell MP at the #PetTheftReform drop-in.

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