Louisiana Man Pleads Guilty to Dogfighting Conspiracy - Six Other Defendants Involved in the Animal Fighting Venture Have Already Been Convicted
United States Attorney Ronald C. Gathe, Jr. announced that U.S. District Judge Brian A. Jackson sentenced Dangelo Dontae Cornish, age 36, of Greensburg, to 14 months in federal prison following his conviction for possessing pit bulls for use in a dogfighting venture. The Court further sentenced Cornish to serve two years of supervised release following his term of imprisonment.
According to admissions made as part of his guilty plea, Cornish admitted that five pit bulls found at his home in Greensburg, Louisiana, were being held and trained for dogfighting. Cornish was found to be discussing dogfighting with members of the Valley Street drug distribution ring operating out of Baton Rouge, when his telephone calls with a member of the ring and others were intercepted during a wiretap. Cornish discussed gambling on dogfights, breeding dogs, and training dogs for dogfighting. In October 2017, federal law enforcement agents obtained a search warrant for Cornish’s residence. At his home agents found five pit bull-type dogs kept in a manner consistent with dogfighting. The dogs were restrained with heavy chains and either weighted dog collars or ankle weights. Agents also found rudimentary outdoor shelters, veterinary supplements manufactured and distributed in interstate commerce, and a treadmill, which was designed to force dogs to exercise. As part of his plea, Cornish admitted he knowingly possessed each of these five dogs for the purpose of animal fighting ventures, and the dogfighting paraphernalia was possessed for the purpose of training and preparing the dogs for participation in animal fighting ventures. The investigation revealed that dogfights were being conducted in Louisiana, Arkansas, Georgia and Mississippi.
In all, from the drug ring case and the animal-fighting venture Cornish is the sixth person to be sentenced to date.
This operation is being investigated the FBI Baton Rouge Capitol Area Gang Task Force, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the United States Marshal Service. This matter is being prosecuted by Matthew D. Evans, Trial Attorney, U.S. Department of Justice, Environment and Natural Resources Division, Washington D.C., and Assistant United States Attorney Lyman E. Thornton III.