§ (1.) Any medical officer or sanitary inspector or any veterinary surgeon approved for the purposes of this section by the local authority may at all reasonable times enter any premises within the district of the local authority, or search any cart or vehicle, or any barrow, basket, sack, bag, or parcel, in order to inspect and examine and may inspect and examine
- (a) any animal, alive or dead, intended for the food of man which is exposed for sale, or deposited in any place or is in course of transmission for the purpose of sale, or of preparation for sale; and
- (b) any article, whether solid or liquid, intended for the food of man, and sold or exposed for sale, or deposited in any place or in course of transmission for the purpose of sale or of preparation for sale.
§ Provided that in the case of any proceeding under this section with regard to a living animal the medical officer or sanitary inspector, unless he is himself a qualified veterinary surgeon, shall be accompanied by a veterinary surgeon approved as aforesaid.
§ The police force of each police area shall have power to search carts or vehicles, or barrows, baskets, sacks, bags, or parcels, and to assist generally in executing and enforcing this section.
§ (2.) If it appears to a sheriff, magistrate, or justice, that any animal or article which has been seized or is liable to be seized under this section is diseased, or unsound, or unfit for the food of man, he shall condemn the same, and order it to be destroyed or so disposed of as to prevent it from being exposed for sale or used for the food of man; and the person to whom the same belongs or did belong at the time of sale or exposure for sale, or deposit or transmission for the purpose of sale, or of preparation for sale, or in whose possession or on whose premises the same was found, shall be liable to a penalty not exceeding fifty pounds for every animal or article, or if the article consists of food, vegetables, corn, bread, or flour, for every parcel thereof so condemned, unless he proves that he and the person acting on his behalf (if any) did not know and could not with reasonable care have known that it was in such a condition, or where the proceedings are before a sheriff, at the discretion of the court, if it finds that he has knowingly and wilfully committed the offence, he shall be liable without the infliction of a penalty, to imprisonment for a term of not more than three months with or without hard labour, and also to pay all expenses caused by the seizure, detention, or disposal thereof.
§ Provided that if such person proves that the animal or part thereof condemned as aforesaid was within a reasonable time prior to the seizure thereof examined upon the premises where the animal was slaughtered and passed by a veterinary surgeon approved as aforesaid called in for the purpose, and who shall have granted a certificate of passing as nearly as may be as in the next sub-section provided, or by a veterinary surgeon in terms of that subsection, he shall be exempt from penalty of imprisonment under this section for such offence.
§ (3.) Each local authority, or two or more local authorities in combination may, if they think fit, appoint a place or places within its district or their districts, and fix a time or times at which a veterinary surgeon approved as aforesaid shall attend for the purpose of examining any animal alive or dead which may there be submitted to him, and passing or condemning the same, and such veterinary surgeon 186 shall, on receipt of a fee to be fixed by the local authority or authorities and paid by the owner, examine and pass or condemn in whole or in part any animal or carcass so submitted to him; and if he shall pass the same he shall grant a certificate of passing which shall set forth the name of the owner, the date and hour of examination, and such particulars regarding the animal or carcass as the local authority or authorities may prescribe for the purpose or aiding in the subsequent identification of the same; and if he shall condemn the animal or carcass, or part thereof, the animal or carcass or part so condemned shall be retained and be forthwith destroyed by the local authority or authorities, or so disposed of as to prevent it from being exposed for sale or used for the food of man, and the owner shall be entitled to the net price realised from the residual product of the carcass or part so condemned, if any, after deducting the expenses of condemnation and destruction. Provided that no carcass shall be submitted for examination, either under this or the immediately preceding sub-section, unless as a whole carcass, including the thoracic; and abdominal viscera, in such manner that the examiner shall be readily able to satisfy himself that the organs are those of the carcass under inspection.
§ (4.) Where it is shown that any animal or article liable to be seized under this section and found in the possession of any person was purchased by him or consigned to him from another person for the food of man, and when so purchased or consigned was in such a condition as to be liable to be seized and condemned under this section, the person who so sold or consigned the same shall be liable to be brought to trial in the district in which such animal or article was seized, and on conviction shall be liable to the penalty and imprisonment above mentioned, unless he proves that at the time he sold or consigned the said animal or article he and the person acting on his behalf, if any, did not know and could not with reasonable care have known that it was in such a condition.
§ (5.) A copy of any certificate granted by a veterinary surgeon, under Sub-section two or three of this section, shall forthwith be sent by him to the chief constable of the jurisdiction in which the examination of the animal or carcass took place, and the certificate itself shall be sent by the person selling the animal or carcass forthwith after the sale, and not more than seven days from the date of the certificate, to the chief constable of the jurisdiction in which the sale of the animal or carcass took place, and if any veterinary surgeon or person shall contravene this enactment he shall be liable to a penalty not exceeding twenty pounds.
§ (6.) Where a person convicted of an offence under this section has been within twelve months previously convicted of an offence under this section, the sheriff, magistrate, or justice may, if he thinks fit, and finds that the offender knowingly and wilfully committed both such offences, order that a notice of the facts be affixed, in such form and manner and for such period not exceeding twenty-one days as the sheriff, magistrate, or justice may order, to any premises occupied, by that person, and that the 187 person do pay the costs of such affixing, and if any person obstructs the affixing of such notice, or removes, defaces, or conceals the notice while affixed during the said period, he shall for each offence be liable to a penalty not exceeding five pounds.
§ (7.) If the occupier of a licensed slaughterhouse is convicted of an offence under this section the sheriff, magistrate, or justice convicting him may cancel the licence for such slaughter-house.
§ (8.) If any person obstructs a medical officer, sanitary inspector, or veterinary surgeon as aforesaid in the performance of his duty under this section he shall, where the proceedings are before a sheriff, and where the sheriff is satisfied that the obstruction was with intent to prevent the discovery of an offence under this section, or that the accused has within twelve months previously been convicted of such obstruction, be liable to imprisonment for any term not exceeding one month in lieu of any penalty authorised by this Act for such obstruction.
§ (9.) A sheriff, magistrate, or justice, may act in adjudicating on an offender under this section whether he has or has not acted in ordering the animal or article to be destroyed or disposed of.
§ Amendment made in Sub-section (2): Leave out "food," and insert "fruit."—(Lord Balfour.)
§ Clause, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Bill.
§ Clauses 44 to 59 inclusive ordered to stand part of the Bill.
§ Clause 60,—