She gets a big fine for having … fed her neighbor’s cat

A story of cats between neighbors that ends in court. It might make you smile, but that’s what happened in Zurich (Switzerland) according to our colleagues Swiss 20 Minutes. For five months, a woman residing in Zurich fed the cat of one of her neighbours, daily and visibly against her will. An attitude that did not please the owner, who therefore decided to sue him. In the penal order, the following facts are even specified: “By acting in this way, she literally locked up the cat, because it could only come out if the accused opened the door for it”.

According to the prosecution, the neighbor wanted to appropriate the cat by establishing a relationship with him. Facts prohibited by law in Switzerland, which is why the court imposed a fine of 700 Swiss francs (677 euros) on him as well as another for procedural costs, i.e. a total of just over 1,200 euros. The defendant decided to appeal. A case that had consequences for the life of the cat. His former owner said the little cat had since had to be placed with a new family “for animal welfare reasons”.

A precedent a few months ago

Very sad today, the complainant is very angry with her neighbor whom she holds responsible for the placement of her cat. Interviewed by 20 Minutes Switzerland, a lawyer specializing in animal rights recalls that it is customary for neighbors to feed animals, but “legal cases are rather rare”. In this case, what is alleged against the accused is to have fed the cat very regularly, while it is only tolerated to do so occasionally. Otherwise, legal action may be taken.

According to our colleagues, a similar case had already taken place in the city of Saint-Gall (Switzerland). A pensioner was also accused of having fed her neighbor’s cat and was initially convicted before being acquitted last February. The judge had then advised him to “check that the cats have a chip” in the future and to “take some distance”. In France, in October 2020, Montpellierans, members of an animal defense association, appeared in court for having fed cats in an anarchic way, attracting other pests to the residence.

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