Gerald Darmanin announces more human resources, Lisa des Ardennes reacts

The Interior Minister has announced more tools to combat animal abuse. France 3 Champagne-Ardenne contacted Sabrina, president of the Lisa association in Charleville-Mézières (Ardennes) to find out how she feels.

Gerald Darmanin, Minister of Internal Affairs announced “strengthen the means” to combat animal abuse. A “national investigation unit dedicated to the fight” against such violence was established in early January 2023.
Moreover, in “Each police station and gendarmerie brigade will be assigned a referent to receive and investigate complaints”. The workforce will represent 4,000 people across the territory.
The minister reminded that the law stipulates a fine of 75,000 euros and a 5-year prison sentence for cruelty to animals. We are talking about the application of article L521-1 of the CM, but only if the animal died due to cruelty. The total penalty is a fine of “just” 45,000 euros and three years in prison.

Sabrina, president of the League for the interests of Charleville-Mézières (Ardennes) society and animals (Lisa), will see these new referents in a good light. “It would be better. Especially if they know the laws well.” Because, unfortunately, this is not always the case, especially in relation to the so-called dangerous dog categories.
“I have been talking about this for a long time: we have a gendarmerie or a policeman to accompany us in the investigation. It would be easier if he was trained only for this. I have hundreds of files on my desk. There are… We only file complaints on the most urgent cases “. Without complaint, police presence for investigations.
This had an effect during the Bob Yorkshire case. Locked in a cellar all his life and swimming in his excrement, the justice ruled that his fate was free from cruelty, because he was fed. The harsh sanction referred to by the minister was not applied, even in the general version. It was a misdemeanor under article R654-1 of the criminal code, with a maximum simple fine of €750.

Which infuriated Sabrina de la Lisa (no appeal). “Four years of trial for this…” According to him, the lack of police when the association came to the owner of the dog was the argument of his lawyer. “But we can’t ask the police to escort us every day, or almost… We’re two girls: it’s something else with someone in uniform. They won’t listen to us anymore.”
Especially “Before, they treated us with insults. Now it’s with knives or guns. It’s getting worse, we really need to be escorted.” Currently, Sabrina is in frequent contact with the Charleville police station. “If there is a good team that loves animals and knows the laws well, nothing will happen.”

If you have a team that loves animals and knows the laws well, everything is fine.

Sabrina, Lisa’s president

“But other times, if we’re up against a team that doesn’t care . . .” he remembers “long ago”, she cried during her investigation where she found a dead dog hanging from a radiator. The unscrupulous policeman told him not to worry because it is “just a dog”.
But “Now we have been working with the Charleville police for several years. We often have documents together, it is regular: they support us. And we are also recognized: it will be 30 years from this January.” (see Facebook post below)

“For the gendarmerie, it depends. You have to find the right gendarme and he loves animals. He has to understand the job well.”

Sabrina Yorkshire’s mistress remains marked by the low sentence given by Bob. If it is only a €550 fine, there is at least a financial penalty. This is not always the case. “How many times have we been in court where people have not been able to pay and therefore not been punished? Our involvement in community service, our taking away of benefits . . .”
“And we strictly forbid them to keep an animal: it’s not even for life, it’s a maximum of five years.”
Therefore, in his opinion, there is an interest in the fact that the punishments provided for in the existing laws (especially when they are proposed) are actually applied. “New laws will create burden” said punishments).

And things get worse with abandonment (absent abuse, so even if it is theoretically sanctioned by the cruelty article of the criminal code). “I’ve never seen it in 30 years, we’re dropping ten schools a day.” Getting a new room to house more dogs and cats doesn’t change anything: it’s already almost a quarter full.
What’s worse is that most of the dogs that are collected and collected at the shelter are the result of investigations for abuse, not just abandonment. “We just captured two American thugs with the police…” Until “Investigations need to be reduced: half the time, you have to catch the dogs”. And not the little ones either: molosser is stored for an average of three years before being taken.
“If I have no more room, where shall we put them? I also have a study of two Malinois in my arms, real skeletons.” It breaks his heart, but he won’t be able to travel for them until he’s sure he’ll welcome them.

We are asked to intervene for all the municipalities of the Ardennes, but the municipalities do not want to pay.

Sabrina, Lisa’s president

“We also need more support.” Financially speaking. “The prosecutor’s office has just ordered the seizure of a dog in Monterrey, the gendarme must bring it to me, but when: who will pay? They ask us to intervene in all the communes of the Ardennes, but the city municipalities are preparing for it. I already have two workers for dogs at 8 o’clock works, but everyone does 40…”
Unity lives “Donations and small grants from the municipality: 100 euros on the left, 200 euros on the right”. There would be a solution “To ask every municipality that brings us a dog one euro per inhabitant or this amount per dog”. But it seems difficult to achieve this.

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