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Belfast man pleads guilty to dog fighting

A BELFAST man was given a suspended jail sentence after pleading guilty to owning a fighting pit bull terrier.

Darryl Black, of Olympia Parade in the city, was sentenced to six months in prison, suspended for two years, at Belfast Magistrate’s Court.

He was also ordered to pay kennelling costs of £1,600 to Belfast City Council as well as £75 in legal costs.

The magistrate issued a destruction order for the dog, which is a prescribed breed under the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991.

The prosecution was brought by the city council following an organised search of Black’s premises on 7 September 2007, with assistance from the PSNI and USPCA.

The dog was found in the rear yard of the property and a number of items were seized, including items commonly used in connection with illegal dog fighting, such as a tin of paw wax, skin staple, skin staple remover and a jar of wound wash.

A book on pit bull terriers was also recovered. A spokeswoman for Belfast City Council said: ‘This is a very pleasing result for the council and underlines how seriously we take the issue of dangerous dogs on our streets. It’s a matter of great concern for the general public and we are committed to trying to tackle the issue, in partnership with other agencies’.