Legal Information on Animal Cruelty Offences in NSW

By Sahar Adatia and Jimmy Singh.

 

Easter just wasn’t the same this year.

Instead of the lavish family gatherings, barbecues by the beach and time spent at church that plenty of Australians are used to, in the fight against coronavirus, the focus was on spending time at home.

Moreover, it was limited to being with those living in our households.

But for one Cairns woman, this year, Easter was entirely different.

The woman at hand is 37-year-old, Ivy Pahimbung, from Parramatta Park area in Cairns.

And thanks to an alleged brutal attack on a dog, this year, she spent Easter behind bars.

 

Part 1: A Violent Outburst on a 58-Year-Old Man

It is reported by Queensland Police that on 9 April 2020, Ms Pahimbung engaged in a violent flare-up on a man in his late 50s while they were at a Parramatta Park residence.

Police allege that at around 3am, the woman was woken by a 58-year-old man who she is familiar with.

The pair found themselves in an argument, during which the woman picked up a shifting spanner to arm herself.

According to police, she then made threats to assault the man.

Fearful, the man absconded to the bedroom where he locked the door and waited.

It is alleged the woman then damaged the door with the shifting spanner.

Following this, she speared the door with a knife.

 

Part 2: A “Sickening” Attack in which Cairns Woman Stabs and Attempts to Hang Dog

The bout of aggression doesn’t end there, however.

Later that morning, at about 10am, Cairns police were called to a home on Martyn Street in Parramatta Park.

The woman had allegedly attempted to hang the man’s dog, before violently stabbing it in the eye and chest with a knife.

Cairns police charged Ms Pahimbung with a series of offences, including serious animal cruelty, common assault, burglary and committing wilful damage.

Police described the attack as “sickening”, with Queensland Police Sergeant, Cary Coolican, saying they would not tolerate the alleged actions of the accused.

“This sort of behaviour is just sickening, it’s abhorrent. It’s a defenceless animal and this woman has targeted this animal,” Sergeant. Coolican said.

Meanwhile, the dog was taken to receive medical treatment.

Luckily, the injuries were not life-threatening.

Questions? Speak to a criminal lawyer in Sydney. Call our friendly team 24/7.

 

Members of Cairns Neighbourhood Watch Hear of Incident; Express Profound Anger over Animal Cruelty Act on Social Media

As the Cairns Neighbourhood Watch group informed locals of the incident in a post on social media, the community fiercely condemned the woman’s violence against the dog.

“Why pick on the poor dog. It’s beyond me…,” a Top Fan of the Facebook page wrote.

“I hope they put her away, I hope she gets the same fate poor dog,” voiced another.

For another online user, the sheer anger was palpable as she commented, “Hang her then stab her then throw her away”.

Meanwhile, a member of the group concluded the accused “has serious issues”.

Animal Cruelty Offences In NSW

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) sheds light on the issue of what an act of cruelty towards an animal is understood as.

Put simply, an act of cruelty towards an animal can take a variety of forms.

On one side, there are overt and intentional acts of violence towards animals.

On the other side, there is neglect towards the animal or the failure to provide for the welfare of it, which is up to a person or owner to control.

At the same time, animal cruelty is not simply confined to circumstances involving physical harm.

Indeed, inflicting psychological harm also comprise acts of cruelty towards animals. This can include imposing distress on the animal, terror and even torment.

Overall, animal cruelty is generally described as “any act or omission that causes unnecessary or unreasonable harm to an animal”, and this takes into consideration the many forms of malice that tend to occur towards animals.

Examples of such animal cruelty may include:

  • Beating or injuring an animal
  • Torturing an animal
  • Transporting an animal in a manner that is not proper for its welfare or confining it
  • Failing to provide suitable living conditions for the animal
  • Failing to give adequate food or water to an animal
  • Failing to arrange for apt treatment for disease or injury
  • Causing death to an animal in a way that is inhuman

Committing animal cruelty crimes carry serious criminal consequences in NSW. The penalties are covered in section 530 Crimes Act 1900 (NSW) and sections of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1979 (NSW).

The penalties range from 6-months jail and $5,500 fine to 5-years jail and $22,000 fine.

Click here for a complete outline on animal cruelty offences and defences in NSW.

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