Last week, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) raided and shut down one of the nation’s largest cockfighting arenas, located in the state of Alabama. The raid was the culmination of a series of undercover investigations conducted by the FBI in collaboration with The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS). Working together, investigators from the two organizations compiled evidence documenting a massive illegal cockfighting operation consisting of numerous fighting pits, bleachers for spectators, concession stands, trophies, cockfighting equipment, and rental cages for more than 1,000 roosters. Investigators estimate that more than 400 people attended events at the arena every week, with more than $1 million in bets placed. The compound was empty of people and birds when federal agents arrived, but police are working to identify the perpetrators. HSUS President and CEO Wayne Pacelle praised Alabama law enforcement officials, noting that they “have shown a zero-tolerance policy for malicious cruelty like this.”
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