8 dogs seized in raid believed to be involved in dog fighting ring

Originally published: 04 SEP 21 12:50 ET

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MERIDEN, Connecticut (WFSB) – The state attorney general has requested the state custody of eight pit bulls believed to have been involved in an illegal dog fight in multiple states.

The dogs were confiscated on July 31st during a raid on Meriden’s property at 109 Britannia St.

According to the police, what the neighbors’ thoughts belonged to normal dog training actually belonged to their life as a fighter in an illegal multi-state ring.

Neighbors who refused to appear on camera recall the last night in July when police raided this property on Britannia Street in Meriden and confiscated these eight dogs.

The officials assume that they are all between one and five years old.

Neighbor Two said, “You don’t jump over the fence or anything like that. They’re not aggressive so I only heard them barking and screaming the day they were taken by Animal Control. “

Neighbor One said: “Constant barking at all hours of the night, the owners go out and yell at them. I saw the owners go for a walk with the dogs, they were thin, but they looked like nice dogs. “

The affidavit indicates that the dogs were licensed and belonged to Jose and Nelson Rivera.

We contacted one of them, but on the advice of their lawyer, they declined to comment.

The evidence in the affidavit also paints a picture of the alleged operation.

In addition to the dogs found in cages in the backyard, Connecticut State Police found “a large makeshift and portable dog fight ring and a lawn stained with suspected dried animal blood. Police also confiscated leashes, hanging ropes used to strengthen dogs’ jaw and neck muscles to improve biting, treadmills for dogs, a bicycle and an attached harness that makes dogs run, “break-stick” knives, to force the jaws of dogs to open after bites, a whip, electronic animal scales, electric collars and weight vests. “

“It hurts, nobody should treat their animals like that. That’s not right, ”said neighbor one.

Neighbor Two said, “I just hope that wasn’t the case because we didn’t see or see that. The pictures look disturbing, like the little ring thing, I don’t know what dog fights look like. I hope that wasn’t what it was. “

Officials said the dogs appear to be between 1 and 5 years old and in good physical health. Two of them had healed scars suggesting dog fighting.

In addition, a state animal control officer found that two dogs were too aggressive to be safely removed and returned to their kennels for full examination, a press release said.

“Dog fights are cruel and illegal. These pit bulls have been viciously abused and conditioned to be aggressive and violent fighters. A state police investigation is ongoing and those responsible for these heinous crimes are being brought to justice. We are moving into permanent government care today to ensure the safe care of the abused dogs, ”said Attorney General William Tong.

The dogs are currently in state police custody amid an ongoing investigation into the dog fighting ring.

Tong tries to put the dogs under constant care by the Department of Agriculture.

“Dog fighting is a despicable underground illegal activity that has a negative impact on abused pets,” said Agriculture Commissioner Bryan P. Hurlburt. “We encourage anyone who suspects such activity is taking place to report it to the relevant authorities in order to ensure the health and safety of the animals.”

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