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Seven Kings cockfight ringleader spared jail but gets £12,000 fine and lifetime bird keeping ban

PUBLISHED: 10:30 22 December 2017

Mohammed Asab, 51, shows off his fighting cockerels in a video seized from his mobile by the RSPCA. Photo: RSCPA

Mohammed Asab, 51, shows off his fighting cockerels in a video seized from his mobile by the RSPCA. Photo: RSCPA

Archant

A Seven Kings man convicted of turning his home into a cockfighting den was spared jail time, receiving a lifetime bird keeping ban and £12,000 fine.

Mohammed Asab, 51, of Water Lane, was granted a 22-week suspended sentence and must pay £10,000 for the long-term care of his former cockerels, now forfeited to the RSPCA, and £2000 in legal costs.

He must also pay a £150 victim surcharge, complete 200 hours community service in 12 months, and forfeit his cockfighting paraphernalia.

He was found guilty of causing an animal fight to take place, keeping and training an animal for use in connection with an animal fight, and keeping premises for use for an animal fight on November 15.

Handing down the verdict, District Judge Gary Lucie said: “You were, in my view, the ring leader of this cockfight.

“The offence is aggravated by the fact that this was a deliberate, gratuitous act to cause suffering.”

Commenting on Asab’s attempt to heal the wounds of one of his injured hens, he added: “There was prolonged suffering as your attempt to stitch up the bird was wholly inadequate.”

During the case it was revealed that one of the cockerels has now sadly passed on.

Judge Lucie decided to suspend the sentence due to Asab’s personal circumstances as he is a carer for his poorly brother and granddaughter, and that he has no previous convictions.

Mohamed Arif, 43, of Fairfield Road, Ilford; Akhtar Hussain, 47, of Greenhill Grove, Manor Park; Mehtab Ahmed, 41, of Celebration Way, Chingford; and Altaf Hussain, 54, of Parkstone Road, Coventry, were all found guilty of being present at an animal fight involving cockerels.

Each of the culprits were fined £1,500, plus a £85 victim surcharge, and granted community orders of 200 hours community service to be completed in 12 months.

A 17-year-old was granted conditional discharge and a fine of £180 on November 15.

Mohamed Arif, who confessed to owning three “fancy Polish chickens,” was also ordered to hand over them over to the RSPCA.

“I do not recognise those types of hens as a fighting breed. But all hens are capable of fighting,” said RSCPA Inspector Cliff Harrison, reviewing images of the birds on Arif’s phone.

He added: “Cockfighting is an abhorrent and cruel practise which was outlawed almost 200 years ago.

“During fights, cocks are placed into a pit where they face off, cheered on by a jeering crowd.”

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