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Dog fighting documentary wins award

BBC Northern Ireland’s documentary programme Spotlight has won a Royal Television Society award for its scoop last year on dog fighting.

The 17-month investigation, led by reporter Mandy McAuley, uncovered 15 illegal dog fighting gangs in Northern Ireland, with links in Scandinavia and mainland UK.

The programme was shown in the rest of the UK under the Panorama programme.

Sportsman Gerard Cavlan, GAA all-Ireland medal winner, was exposed as a senior figure in the dog fighting operation. Police have carried out a number of searches, thought to be as a result of the programme.

Spotlight won in the Nations and Regions Current Affairs category, having travelled to Finland to uncover how illegal dogs are transported from Europe into Northern Ireland.