Depiction of Animal Cruelty Law and Legal Definition

Depiction of Animal cruelty refers to any visual or audio recording of cruelty shown to animals. Any act which inflicts harm or suffering like maiming, mutilation, torture, wounding, or killing of an animal is animal cruelty. In the U.S it is a federal crime to knowingly create, sell, or possess a depiction of animal cruelty for gaining profit.[ 18 USCS § 48]. The law exempts from prohibition any depiction that has serious religious, political, scientific, educational, journalistic, historical, or artistic value Even though the U.S. government banned the depiction of animal cruelty in 1999, it was overruled by the an en banc panel of the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in United States v. Stevens, 130 S. Ct. 1577 (U.S. 2010) on ground that the category "depiction of animal cruelty" contained in the law was not an exception to First Amendment protections.

The following is an example of Federal Statute defining depiction of animal cruelty

According to 18 USCS § 48, depiction of animal cruelty means any visual or auditory depiction, including any photograph, motion-picture film, video recording, electronic image, or sound recording of conduct in which a living animal is intentionally maimed, mutilated, tortured, wounded, or killed, if such conduct is illegal under Federal law or the law of the State in which the creation, sale, or possession takes place, regardless of whether the maiming, mutilation, torture, wounding, or killing took place in the State.