Investigation Continues Into Large Cockfighting Operation

The arrest of 32 people on Saturday after a cockfighting operation was uncovered in Cass County is welcome news by the Nebraska Humane Society. 

The operation was discovered Saturday when authorities in Cass County got a tip. They confiscated 186 live roosters at a farm near Louisville.  11 others were found dead."This was a very large scale cockfighting operation, way bigger than we've ever seen here in the Omaha area."

Langan credits the cooperation of the Cass County Sheriff’s Office for breaking up the operation and arresting the 32 people involved.

They are all between the ages of 20 and 67.  They were arrested on suspicion of participating, viewing or promoting cockfighting.  Some were also arrested on suspicion of obstruction of a peace officer. Two juveniles were also detained and released to their parents.

"We know there are cockfighting and dogfighting operations in the midwest area and Saturday's case exemplifies this," Langan tells NewsRadio 1110 KFAB.  "So anybody who has information about cockfighting and dogfighting should call CrimeStoppers (444-STOP) or their local law enforcement agency."

When Officers arrived they spotted numerous cars parked on the property, according to the Cass County Sheriff's Department.  As they approached the barn area numerous people flooded out and took off into the trees and fields to the north of the property.

Inside the barn, officers seized many items related to cockfighting, including blades, syringes and a fighting pen.

The roosters inside the barn were in small boxes or crates. Many of the birds had fresh injuries apparently sustained while fighting.   "It was a terrible situation for the birds that were involved.  Many had injuries, we found dead birds at the scene," Langan says. "It's just a barbaric sport and I'm glad over 30 felony arrests were made." 

The birds are being held for evidence and their reports will be submitted to the Cass County attorney for prosecution.

Those who were arrested Saturday: 

Gerardo Manzo Reyes, age 43; Ulises Jacinto, age 32; Emilio Belb, age 35; Juan Aguilar, age 46; Mauro Valente, age 27; Roberto Cabrera, age 42; Pablo Suastegue, age 20; Abel Guerrero, age 29; Estela Moreno Barren, age 29; Migual Cruz, age 38; Juan Pena, age 52; Francisco Almazan, age 32; Elias Ramirez, age 33; Jose Lopez, age 40; Abel Chavez-Guzman, age 58; Fernando Gonzalez Balquier, age 46; Jesus Guerrero, age 27; Abel Garcia, age 30; Mario Sandoval, age 38; William Vega, age 24; Efrain Hermosillo, age 58; Victor Ramirez, age 57; Antonia Ozuna-Bernal, age 39; Saleena Robinson, age 24; Victor Perez, age 32; Luis Gomez, age 32; Eanie Heidemann, age 67; Juan Esquivel, age 36; Lucio Ventura, age 57; Rosalio Hernandez, age 37; Sergio Padron, age 29; Antonio Garcia, age 38

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