Title:A zoofília megítélése és büntetőjogi szabályozása tizenöt európai országban
SUMMARY Background: Zoophilia, the sexual attraction to animals is as old as humanity, but its acceptance has changed throughout history. The subject can be approached in many ways, as it has veterinarian, psychological, criminological, sociological, and ethical aspects. Cases that are zoophil-motivated, but cannot be regarded as animal cruelty in a legal sense, reveal a lot about how the society sees the internal values of the animals.Objectives: This article focuses on the legal aspects of zoophilia in European countries, particularly in the criminal law. Materials and methods: The criminal regulation of fifteen European countries (Hungary, Austria, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland) was examined. The following four questions were answered: whether certain forms of sexual acts committed with animals are punishable by criminal law, whether all sexual acts committed with animals are punishable,and whether either the distribution or the possession of animal pornography products ispunishable. Finally, the ranking was compared to the one based on the animal abuse subin-dex of the Animal Protection Index (API) of the World Animal Protection (WAP), where it was possible.Results and Discussion: European legislation does not show a unified pic-ture. The Netherlands, Norway and Switzerland have the most comprehensive criminal law provisions on zoophilia, but Italy, Hungary and Slovenia have no criminal sanctions for these cases. The other countries are located between the two end points of the scale. There is no country, in which the penal regulation of zoophilia is at higher quality than the regulation of animal abuse. Both reg-ulations are outstanding in the Netherlands and in Switzerland. While Austria’s and Germany’s anti-cruelty regulation is at a high level, sanctions for zoophilia do not appear prominently in criminal law. No significant correlation was found between the API sub-index and the zoophilia (p = 0.1333).