Few details in raids, removal of dogs

Published 12:10 am Saturday, August 24, 2013

Federal officials are expected to provide details Monday about a pre-dawn raid near the Coffee-Covington County Line on Hwy. 84 Friday that is believed to be part of an investigation into an alleged dog fighting ring.

Animal rescue equipment was on the scene west of Elba, as well as at another raid in Lee County. State and federal authorities have not yet commented on whether the two events were related. Search warrants also were executed at homes other than the Hwy. 84 location from which the dogs were taken.

Calls to the FBI Friday were routed to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Montgomery, but the U.S. Attorney’s Office provided no information.

In Lee County, Sheriff Jay Jones confirmed to the Opelika-Auburn News that law enforcement served search warrants and arrest warrants at multiple sites and that a considerable number of dogs were confiscated in the process as part of a years-long federal investigation spanning several states in the South, several years and numerous agencies regarding dog fighting.

Jones said the participating agencies included the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the U.S. Marshals Service, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and the Humane Society of the United States.

A press conference about the case has been set for 10:30 a.m. in Montgomery Monday.