HC Deb 03 July 1911 vol 27 cc789-90

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will state when the return of experiments on living animals for the year 1910 will be issued; and whether he is aware that, having regard to the fact that no proceedings for an offence under the Cruelty to Animals Act, 1876, can be instituted after the lapse of six months from the time when the matter of complaint arose, and that such returns are practically the only means whereby the public can obtain any information as to whether any such offence has been or appears to have been committed, the withholding of such return for more than six months after 31st December, 1910, precludes all possibility of instituting any prosecution for such offences, if any, as may have been committed during the year aforesaid?


The return has been completed and will be issued in a few days. It has been prepared with all possible despatch, and I regret that owing to the amount of labour involved I cannot hold out any hope that the publication can be accelerated. As regards offences by licensees, any contravention of the Act is reported to the Secretary of State as soon as it is discovered, and proceedings could and would be instituted at once if the circumstances appear to call for action of this nature.