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Extended sentence for dog fighter

A father who acted as a referee at one of the bloodiest dogfights the RSPCA has ever investigated, has had his prison sentence extended to 11 months.

Intikab Hussain from Birmingham was sentenced to five months imprisonment by Birmingham Magistrates' Court after pleading guilty to charges of possessing pit bull terriers, possessing dogs for fighting, possessing a treadmill for training dogs and breaching a five year disqualification on possessing dogs.

This sentence is to be served consecutively to his current term of six months' imprisonment following a failed appeal. That sentence related to causing unnecessary suffering, assisting at a dogfight, and possessing a pit bull terrier.

These charges relate to offences committed in March this year, just five months after he had been convicted of dogfighting. The five-year disqualification for keeping dogs he received then was also extended to ten years.

The dogfight, which took place in a kitchen showroom in the Alum Rock area of Birmingham on 5 February 2006, left both dogs fatally wounded - one with 103 injuries and the other with 21. The fight, which was recorded on film by onlookers, lasted more than two hours and was watched by a group of 26 men gathered around a makeshift pit constructed of kitchen units and a treadmill. Police discovered the dogfight in progress after a member of the public called Crimestoppers.

Chief Inspector Ian Briggs, of the RSPCA's Special Operations Unit, said: "Hussain was a key player at the fight, overseeing the cruelty and making sure the owners stuck to the barbaric rules.The fact that he then went out and acquired more dogs following his initial conviction shows the extent of his obsession with dogfighting. The court sentencing him to consecutive prison terms underlines the dim view it takes on this abhorrent activity. Owning dogs and training them to rip each other apart has no place in our society and the RSPCA will do whatever it can to track down these people and put them before a court."