BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Two Maryland men and a Washington, D.C. man have been sentenced to prison for their involvement in a multi-state dog fighting ring, the U.S. Department of Justice announced Thursday. The network spanned D.C., Maryland, Virginia and New Jersey.
According to court documents, Chester A. Moody, Jr., 47, of Glenn Dale, Maryland; Emmanuel A. Powe, Sr., 46, of Frederick, Maryland; and Odell S. Anderson, Sr., 52, of D.C. participated in almost every aspect of dog fighting from at least 2013 to 2018.READ MORE: Marilyn Mosby's Office Releases Names Of Baltimore Police Officers On "Do Not Call" List
The three men reportedly participated in full-blown dog fighting shows that were planned months in advance. In one 2016 fight in Virginia, officials said two dogs, owned and sponsored by the defendants, died after losing fights.
Officials said both Anderson and Moody trained and fought dogs with “Champion” or “Grand Champion” status, meaning they had won multiple consecutive fights.
The trio reportedly owned dog fighting equipment like dog treadmills, veterinary kits, breeding stands and weighted collars.READ MORE: Maryland Man Faces Federal Charges Following Capitol Riot
“The violent and cruel act of dog fighting is a heinous form of animal abuse,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Raj Parekh for the Eastern District of Virginia. “These defendants served as leaders, breeders and trainers for a multi-year dog fighting operation and brazenly promoted this barbaric form of ‘entertainment’ for illegal personal gain. We must treat these animals — who are among society’s most vulnerable victims — with dignity and respect.”
Moody pleaded guilty in April to one felony count of conspiracy to engage in dog fighting activities over several years. He will serve a year and a day in prison followed by a year of supervised release.
Powe pleaded guilty in May to one felony count of conspiracy to engage in dog fighting activities over several years. He’ll serve 18 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release.
Anderson pleaded guilty on June 1 to the same felony count of conspiracy to engage in dog fighting activities and also pleaded guilty to one count of causing a child under the age of 16 to attend an illegal animal fight venture. He will serve 18 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release.MORE NEWS: Maryland Students Suffer From Anxiety Following School Shooting In Texas
The case was prosecuted as part of Operation Grand Champion, a collaboration of federal judicial districts to combat organized dog fighting.