On receiving reports of cruelty to animals, uniformed officers will first be deployed to conduct initial enquiries, while expert opinions and assistance on site will be sought from AFCD or SPCA where necessary. The SPCA, with a dedicated team on 24-7 standby, will deploy its staff to the scene within one hour upon request by the Police.
Since 2008, all cruelty to animals reported to Police have been taken up by crime investigation teams. Crime investigation officers have received specialised training and possessed sufficient experience and investigative skills to handle the cases. All these cases are supervised by a Detective Chief Inspector to ensure that the investigations are conducted in a consistent and professional manner.
At present, all 22 Police districts with crime investigation units have assigned designated teams to investigate animal cruelty cases. The designated teams are also responsible for investigating other serious crimes such as burglary, indecent assault, wounding, etc. An experience sharing platform is available among the designated teams for them to share their investigative experience. Specialised trainings are also provided to the investigating officers. Assigning designated teams not only enables the investigating officers to accumulate experience in this area of investigative work but also improves communication between the districts and the stakeholders of the AWS.