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Arrest Made in Connection with the Case of 123 Fighting Roosters Seized from Dallas Cockfighting Operation in August, 2017


(DALLAS, TX); January 28, 2019 – Raul Torres-Martinez, 38, was arrested on Wednesday, January 23, 2019, in connection with the case of 123 fighting roosters seized by the SPCA of Texas from an alleged cockfighting operation in Southeast Dallas in August, 2017. The individual has been booked in to the Kaufman County Justice Center and charged with two Class A misdemeanors, "owns or trains a cock with the intent that the cock be used in an exhibition of cockfighting" and "manufactures, buys, sells, barters, exchanges, possesses, advertises, or otherwise offers a gaff, slasher or other sharp implement designed for attachment to a cock with the intent that the implement be used in cockfighting." A bond of $1,500 was set and the individual remains in custody. The case has been filed with the Dallas County District Attorney’s Office.

Cockfighting is a crime in all 50 states, including Texas, where it is a felony, punishable by up to two years in a state jail and/or up to a $10,000 fine, to cause birds to fight with one another and/or to participate in the earnings of a cockfight. In Texas, it is a Class C Misdemeanor to be a spectator at a cockfight. Federal law also prohibits any interstate or foreign transport of fighting animals.

This arrest and these charges stem from the seizure that took place on August 29, 2017, when the SPCA of Texas and Dallas Animal Services seized and the SPCA of Texas took custody of 123 birds—including 95 fighting roosters, 22 hens and seven chicks—from an alleged Southeast Dallas cockfighting operation. Most of the birds were found in individual pens, with a few being tethered by their feet. One tethered rooster had a broken leg. Cockfighting paraphernalia was also found at the property, including short knives, known as “slashers,” and vitamins and antibiotics commonly used for fighting birds.

To view and download photos and video of the birds taken at the scene, please go to the dropbox link.

The SPCA of Texas was notified of the case by Code Enforcement and Animal Control on August 29, 2017, and obtained a seizure warrant the same day. The SPCA of Texas was able to make contact with one owner, who agreed to surrender the birds to the SPCA of Texas. The birds and were taken to the SPCA of Texas’ Russell E. Dealey Animal Rescue Center to receive medical care and evaluations for placement.

To help support the SPCA of Texas and its efforts to help abused, neglected and homeless animals and to support the SPCA of Texas' other programs and services, please visit To learn more about the SPCA of Texas, please visit our website at


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