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We advocate on all animal protection and exploitation issues, including experimentation, factory farming, rodeos, breeders and traveling animal acts.

Animal Defenders of Westchester
P.O. Box 205
Yonkers, NY 10704

Articles

Bronx man who had 15 fighting cocks is arrested, ASPCA says

From NY Newsday (www.newsday.com):
By DESMOND  BUTLER
Associated Press Writer
March 13, 2005, 7:05 PM EST

NEW YORK -- A Bronx man who owned 15 roosters that had been shaved and  surgically altered for cockfighting was arrested on Sunday, animal protection   authorities said.

The arrest of Orlando Fernandez, 54, capped an American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals investigation that began Feb. 8, when agents   seized 25 birds, including the 15 with scars typical of fighting roosters, from the basement of a Bronx house.

Fernandez, who did not live in the house, was charged with 15 counts of possession of fighting animals after investigators determined the birds belonged to him, and he could face up to a year in prison for each count if convicted,  ASPCA spokesman Joe Pentangelo said.

"We are committed to combatting rooster fighting," Pentangelo said.

Fernandez, who was being booked Sunday evening, did not have a listed telephone number.

The fighting cocks were seized after a police officer saw a man carrying  one of them outside the house and called the ASPCA because it is illegal to  possess a live chicken in New York City, the ASPCA said. Also found were   syringes, vitamins and antibiotics, which often are used to treat the cocks  after they have been injured in fights, the ASPCA said.

The altered birds, which had missing combs, shaved chests and sharpened  spurs, were euthanized. The other 10 were taken to an animal care center.

The ASPCA recently launched a toll-free hot line for New Yorkers to report  animal abuse: 877-THE-ASPCA.

The ASPCA, founded in 1866, is a privately funded organization that  provides education, shelter outreach and poison control programming and lobbies  for animal welfare legislation nationwide. Its agents are officers of the peace,  authorized to carry out warrants and carry firearms.

In 2003, the ASPCA rescued 46 purebred wire hair fox terriers that were  found stuffed into cages and covered with debris in the basement of a Bronx  house whose owner had died.

And when a Sing Sing prison guard crushed five kittens to death in a trash compactor in March 2001, the ASPCA cared for their mother, Midnight.

The guard  was sentenced to a year in jail.

On the Net:
ASPCA:  http://www.aspca.org/  

Copyright 2005, The Associated Press

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