Despite the admittedly hefty fines for animal abuse, reaching up to 30,000 euros, most culprits are still, reportedly, avoiding punishment, according to activists.
This is because fines are imposed by the police and then revised or even cancelled by municipalities on appeal. Moreover, they say, many mayors are hesitant to displease voters “over an animal.”
According to the most recent data compiled by animal rights groups, nearly eight out of 10 abuses involve pets.
“I am horrified that such people are circulating among us, without having suffered any consequences for their actions,” says Elizabeth Iliaki who runs the Souda Shelter in Hania on Crete, which has seen several high-profile animal abuse cases in recent months.
Elena Dede, lawyer and founder of the Dogs’ Voice NGO, said fines should “be disconnected from municipalities and upheld by the tax authorities to ensure their collection.”