The BC SPCA derives its powers to investigate and take action in instances of animal cruelty from the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act (PCA Act).
We are the only animal welfare organization in BC that has the authority to enforce laws relating to animal cruelty. Our Cruelty Investigations team can also recommend charges under both the PCA Act as well as the Criminal Code of Canada to Crown Counsel for the prosecution of individuals who inflict suffering on animals.
In order for us to recommend charges to Crown Counsel, it must be in the public’s interest to prosecute, and there must be a substantial likelihood of conviction. Ultimately, it is Crown Counsel’s decision on whether or not charges are pursued.