Animal activists face much bigger fines if they trespass onto Australian farms.
Victoria is following other states to boost fines to try and stop activists exploiting a weakness in laws to make public protests.
Illegal hunting also falls within the provisions of most new farm trespass laws.
The crackdown comes after activists dramatically ramped up campaigns against farming with livestock theft, live-streaming from inside enclosures and abattoirs in the middle of the night plus other protests.
Farm groups often complain those who are eventually caught leave courts with a slap on the wrist.
Farmers were outraged when an activist was fined $1 after three people entered a Gippsland goat farm in 2019, leaving with four animals.
The activist was placed on a good behaviour bond by the court and ordered to pay $250 compensation.
The Victorian government this week claimed its new on-the-spot fines for animal activists who trespass on farms will be the "toughest in the nation".
The other states might disagree
Legislation has been passed in Victoria to introduce on-the-spot fines of $1272 for an individual and $8178 for an organisation for farm trespass.
Further fines of up to $10,904 for an individual and up to $54,522 for an organisation could apply for more serious offending.
The Queensland government in 2020 introduced penalties of up to one year in jail or fines up to $60,000 for "farm invaders".
NSW has passed new trespass laws as part of its Right to Farm Bill which threatens up to three years' jail for those illegally entering farms, letting stock out or even tampering with cattle grids.
MORE READING: RSPCA keeps out of new animal rights alliance.
Fines for "aggravated" farm trespass in NSW were to increase to a possible $22,000 in fines.
South Australia has recently introduced a new penalty for farm trespass which attracts up to $10,000 in fines or a year's jail.
Farmers in South Australia will also be able to seek compensation for any damage caused by trespassers.
The government also increased penalties for interfering with farm gates (from $750 to $1500) and introducing on-the-spot $375 fines for the offence, increased penalties for disturbing farm animals ($2500 or six months imprisonment) and the doubling of fines for other trespassing offences if they take place on primary production land.
The Western Australian government is also beefing up its farm trespass laws with a Bill to impose fines of $24,000 or up to two years in jail for "trespass onto abattoirs, knackeries or other agricultural production properties".
Most of the states are triggering biosecurity requirements to protect the farms.
To enact this new legal protection, the Victorian government has advised farmers to implement a biosecurity management plan which can require consent before anyone can access their property.
The Victorian Farmers Federation says it will partner with Agriculture Victoria to help farmers put these plans in place.
Victorian Agriculture Minister Mary-Anne Thomas said the new on-the-spot fines for animal activists who trespass on farms "will be the toughest in the nation".
"Farmers and workers in the agricultural industry should be able to do their work without fear of being targeted by animal activists. This sort of activity is highly distressing for farming families and puts the biosecurity and safety of animals at risk."
Animal welfare groups have told parliamentary inquiries they should be afforded the freedom to make peaceful public protests.
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