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Posted: June 28, 2013 3:38 p.m.

6 charged in cockfighting arrests near Athens

JEFFERSON, Ga. (AP) — Sheriff's deputies have arrested six people in a raid on what authorities say was a cockfighting arena operating in someone's backyard near Athens.

The Athens Banner-Herald reports  Jackson County Sheriff Janis Mangum said Thursday the arrests were county's the first for illegal cockfighting in more than 20 years.

A police report says deputies acting on a tip last weekend found 15 to 20 people standing around as two roosters fought in the backyard of a home in Maysville. Deputies found feathers and metal spurs on the ground, bottles of penicillin and several dead roosters.

Spectators watching the fight scattered when deputies showed up, but they arrested six men on charges of obstruction and cruelty to animals.

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