IN THE NEWS: 153 birds part of huge illegal cockfighting


IN THE NEWS: On NOV 20, 2012

ANIMAL welfare authorities have removed 153 cockfighting birds from a Lovely Banks property after statewide raids.

The RSPCA and police broke up a large cockfighting ring and seized more than 400 roosters in Melbourne's outer west in September.

Officers said it was one of the biggest rings discovered in Victoria.

John Ung, of Anakie Rd, Lovely Banks, faced Sunshine Magistrates' Court on November 9, charged with being found in a common gaming place and attending a fighting event.

He was ordered to surrender his 153 roosters and banned from owning poultry for 10 years.

RSPCA inspector Hugh Robinson said officers went to the Anakie Rd property last week to remove the roosters, which they believed had been used in cockfighting. He said the birds were destroyed.

"These animals are bred for cockfighting and groomed and housed in a manner that depicts this," he said.

"They're very aggressive and will attack.

"Unfortunately they cannot be rehomed."

The RSPCA said it was an offence under state and federal animal cruelty laws to allow gamecocks to fight, to possess cockfighting implements, or own a bird for the purposes of fighting.

It's also an animal cruelty offence to attend a cockfight.

Melbourne police swooped on a Rockbank property on September 9 and charged more than 80 people after investigations into the illegal gaming.

Mr Robinson said two offenders from the Geelong area had also faced court in the past month on separate matters unrelated to cockfighting.

Reggae Rodaughan, of Chaffey Square, Corio, was charged with aggravated cruelty and fined $500 on November 2.

The offence related to a mastiff that developed osteomyelitis in a front leg after being attacked by another dog.

On the same day, Daniel Hose, of Forrest Rd, Lara, faced the Geelong Magistrates' Court, charged with failing to provide vet treatment.

He was fined $500.

The offence related to a goat found on his property that was missing half a front leg.

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