Wednesday 18 October 2017

Thousands waged at Border cockfights

BLOODY: Birds being fitted with spurs at a recent illegal cockfight along the Monaghan/Armagh border
BLOODY: Birds being fitted with spurs at a recent illegal cockfight along the Monaghan/Armagh border

patsy mcardle

THREE major cockfights, in which several thousands in cash changed hands, were held near the Border this year, it has been revealed.

The news comes in the wake of a shocking claim, during the past week, that one such event attended by upwards of 60 people was held two weeks ago.

The claim was made by Stephen Philpott, chief executive officer of the Ulster Society of Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (USPCA).

He alleged an illegal cockfighting event took place near the Border in Co Monaghan a fortnight ago – just days in advance of the G8 summit, for which there was unprecedented cross-border security.

He confirmed that video footage was recently obtained by the USPCA of the illicit cockfights being staged along the Monaghan/Armagh border. The footage includes cars and vans transporting birds to the cockfights, and shows spectators placing bets on the different birds, which are all fitted with steel spurs to tear each other to death.

The video footage has been passed to the authorities but it is not clear if any further action can be taken against individuals identified.

Yesterday, it emerged two previous cockfights were staged near Castleshane, Co Monaghan, close to the Middletown border with Co Armagh, and at Drumully, near Clones.

Irish Independent

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