3,000 birds rescued in cockfighting bust - New York News

3,000 birds rescued in cockfighting bust

Posted: Updated:
ASPCA ASPCA
NEW YORK (AP) -- More than 3,000 birds were rescued in a three-county cockfighting takedown in New York this weekend that resulted in nine felony arrests, according to the state Attorney General's Office.

In a statement released Sunday night, Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said it was the largest cockfighting takedown in New York state and among the largest in U.S. history.

"Operation Angry Birds" simultaneously targeted locations in Queens, Brooklyn and Ulster County with assistance from the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and the Ulster County Sheriff's office, Schneiderman said.

"Cockfighting is a cruel, abusive and barbaric practice that tortures animals, endangers the health and safety of the public and is known to facilitate other crimes," Schneiderman said.

At the cockfights, spectators were charged admission fees and an additional fee for a seat within the secret basement location that housed the all-night fights, authorities said. Alcohol was sold without a permit and owners and spectators placed bets on the fights with individual wagers reaching $10,000.

In Queens, authorities raided a cockfighting bimonthly event where 70 people were taken into custody, including six who were arrested on felony prohibition of animal fighting charges. The ASPCA took control of 65 fighting birds, authorities said.

In Brooklyn, a pet shop was raided where 50 fighting birds were rescued from a basement beneath the pet shop. The pet shop's owner was arrested on a felony charge and cockfighting contraband, including artificial spurs and syringes used to inject performance enhancing drugs into the roosters, were also found.

The pet shop owner was charged with prohibition of animal fighting, prosecutors said.

Authorities also raided a 90-acre farm in Plattekill, rescuing as many at 3,000 birds. The farm's owners charged rent to cockfighting enthusiasts from various other states, including, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and Massachusetts to board, feed and care for roosters that were bred and trained to fight, prosecutors said. A farm manager and a farm hand at the scene were arrested.

Authorities said the roosters had razor-sharp gaffs attached in place of their spurs and were locked in small pens to be wagered on. The ASPCA has established a temporary shelter to house and care for the animals.

In New York, cockfighting and possession of a fighting bird at a cockfighting location are felonies and each charge carries a maximum penalty of four years in jail and a fine of up to $25,000, according to the attorney general's office. Paying to attend one of these events is a misdemeanor and carries a possible sentence of up to one year in jail and a $1,000 fine.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
  • New York State NewsNew York State NewsMore>>

  • Repaving of Palisades Parkway begins

    Repaving of Palisades Parkway begins

    Monday, July 21 2014 10:42 PM EDT2014-07-22 02:42:19 GMT
    Crews have begun repaving along the Palisades Interstate Parkway. The last time such work was done on the road, which links New York state to the George Washington Bridge, was the mid-1990s.
    Crews have begun repaving along the Palisades Interstate Parkway. The last time such work was done on the road, which links New York state to the George Washington Bridge, was the mid-1990s.
  • Conn. woman arrested on I-684 on drug charges

    Conn. woman arrested on I-684 on drug charges

    Monday, July 21 2014 2:35 PM EDT2014-07-21 18:35:02 GMT
    New York State police say a passenger in a car pulled over for speeding was found to be carrying 85 pills of the painkiller Oxycodone. After stopping the car on Interstate 684, police say a search revealed the passenger, Johannie Cruz of Waterbury, Connecticut, had marijuana and painkillers on her.
    New York State police say a passenger in a car pulled over for speeding was found to be carrying 85 pills of the painkiller Oxycodone. After stopping the car on Interstate 684, police say a search revealed the passenger, Johannie Cruz of Waterbury, Connecticut, had marijuana and painkillers on her.
  • Original state troopers' graves get new markers

    Original state troopers' graves get new markers

    A gravestone has been dedicated at the previously unmarked burial plot of one of New York's original state troopers. Retired state police Sgt. Kevin Kailbourne of Wellsville has been leading an effort to mark the graves of every state trooper, including the originals. They were known as "campmen" because they were trained at a National Guard camp outside Syracuse after the law enforcement agency was created in 1917.
    A gravestone has been dedicated at the previously unmarked burial plot of one of New York's original state troopers. Retired state police Sgt. Kevin Kailbourne of Wellsville has been leading an effort to mark the graves of every state trooper, including the originals. They were known as "campmen" because they were trained at a National Guard camp outside Syracuse after the law enforcement agency was created in 1917.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices