Over a thousand people attended a public rally at Belfast City Hall on Sunday (April 27) calling for tougher penalties to be imposed on those convicted of cruelty to animals.
The rally, organised through social media, was attended by animal lovers from the Cookstown and Magherafelt areas.
Speakers included Alliance MP Naomi Long, councillors, and representatives from animal welfare charities such as The League Against Cruel Sports and ARAN.
At the rally the support group which calls itself ‘Northern Ireland Says No To Animal Cruelty’ demanded a dedicated PSNI unit to tackle animal abuse.
The rally was organised in response to one of the major recent cases of animal cruelty in which three members of the Kirkwood family from East Belfast walked free.