indicted on dog-fighting charges
The Atlanta Falcons
quarterback Michael Vick has been indicted on dog-fighting
charges, part of a federal case.
papers filed in Richmond, Virginia, on Tuesday mention Michael
Vick as a defendant in a federal criminal case. According to the
documents, Vick is charged with conspiracy to travel in
interstate commerce in aid of unlawful activities and to sponsor
a dog in an animal fighting venture.
The charges stem from the month-long
investigation by the FBI and local Virginia authorities of an
illegal dogfight ring, which used property belonging to the
Atlanta Falcons player Michael Vick. Vick's Surry County
property had been the target of a dog fighting investigation
since April, when dozens of pit bulls and equipment used in dog
fighting were found during a drug investigation.
According to the court papers, the name
of the dog-fighting operation was "Bad Newz Kennels". The
indictment alleges that the 27-year-old Vick and his
co-defendants began a grisly dog fighting operation in early
2001 in which dogs fought to the death - or close. Losing dogs
were sometimes killed by electrocution, drowning, hanging or
The three other defendants listed are
Purnell A. Peace, also known as "P-Funk" and "Funk," Quanis L.
Phillips, known as "Q", and Tony Taylor, known as "T." According
to the documents filed today, Vick went by the nickname "Ookie."
NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy commented
on the Vick's indictment: "We are disappointed that Michael Vick
has put himself in a position where a federal grand jury has
returned an indictment against him. The activities alleged are
cruel, degrading and illegal. Michael Vick's guilt has not yet
been proven, and we believe that all concerned should allow the
legal process to determine the facts."
At the beginning of the investigation,
Michael Vick claimed that he had no knowledge of the illegal dog
fighting operation, and blamed his relative for taking advantage
of his generosity. If convicted, Michael Vick faces up to six
years in prison, plus fines.
Follow the links below to get the background
of the "Bad Newz Kennels" story.
Published on 07/17/2007