A group of British teens are facing charges for allegedly chasing a pregnant cow until she and her unborn calf died earlier this month.
ITV News reports British law allows punishments for killing an unborn animal under the Protection of Livestock Act of 1953.
According to Axminster police, a group of teens with a dog chased the pregnant cow on private farmland May 9 near Axminster, a town near Exeter, the report states.
“On May 9, on private land at White bridges Axminster, it was reported that a group of youths with a dog chased a cow who was heavily pregnant, and she and her unborn calf died as a result,” police said. “Again on May 15, it was reported to police that a group of teenage youths were chasing cows in the field on Castle Hill.”
The teens face charges for “worrying livestock,” which includes “chasing livestock in such a way as may be reasonably expected to cause injury or suffering; in the case of ewes, this includes abortion or loss or reduction in the number of offspring.”
Tragically, British law treats unborn animals with more value than unborn human children. Abortions are legal for any reason up to 24 weeks in the UK, and they are allowed up to birth in a wide variety of circumstances.
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The 2018 Abortion Statistics, published by the Department of Health and Social Care, show that 205,295 unborn babies were killed by abortion that year in the UK.
British laws do not provide much justice for unborn babies who are victims of non-abortion violence either. As the BBC reported in 2015, “A law of child destruction applies to the deaths of some unborn babies … and carries a life sentence. Legal abortion is an exception.” However, very few are charged or convicted under the law.
Lawyer Alison Mafham told the news outlet that few pursue such charges because, “whatever moral standpoint you take, in the eyes of the law an unborn child is not a person.”
To convict someone of killing an unborn baby, “the prosecution has to prove not only have you killed a child, capable of being born alive, but you intended to kill it – so you wanted that unborn child dead – and that’s quite a hard thing to prove,” she said.
In the United States, 37 states recognize the unlawful killing of an unborn baby as homicide in at least some circumstances, according to the National Right to Life Committee. In 2019, New York repealed its fetal homicide law as part of a larger pro-abortion law.