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Seized Roosters Had Been Shipped From Puerto Rico

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Wolcott animals seized (Courtesy Department of Agriculture)

Wolcott animals seized (Courtesy Department of Agriculture)

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WOLCOTT, Conn. (AP) _ Roosters seized this week from a farm in Wolcott were apparently shipped from Puerto Rico and used in an underground cockfighting ring, officials said Thursday.

Injuries to the birds and evidence including syringes, penicillin and tags that suggest they were used in illegal fights, Police Chief Edward Stephens. He said his department is investigating where the fights may have taken place.

More than 100 birds were seized Wednesday from Hillside Equestrian Meadows. Stephens said police have identified the people who were renting the two areas where the birds were found, but no arrests have been made.

Crates on the property suggest at least some of the birds were shipped from Puerto Rico, a U.S. territory where cockfighting is legal and popular.

Raymond Connors, a supervisor of the Department of Agriculture’s animal control division, said underground cockfighting rings have been found in Connecticut’s urban areas. He said the last one discovered by state authorities was found in Waterbury several years ago.

“We’ve run into it from time to time,” he said. “It’s usually on a Saturday night kind of thing, with food and drink. Usually we get a tip that it’s going on.”

The state’s last seizure of cockfighting birds was in 2009 in Harwinton, where officials found more than 300 birds.

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

 

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