MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Three brothers are being charged after authorities shut down a bird fighting ring, operating on several farms in western Wisconsin.
Investigators charged Ernesto, Augustine and Idelio Benitez Tuesday. Nearly 1,200 birds were found living in cages and make-shift enclosures on four properties in Polk and St. Croix counties.READ MORE: Girl In Very Critical Condition After Being Shot In Head In North Minneapolis
Investigators say they seized a fighting pit and knives that are attached to roosters during fights.READ MORE: Brooklyn Center Passes Sweeping Public Safety Resolution To Reform Policing
The search warrant came after a tip kicked off months of investigation.
Authorities teamed up with the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. The ASPCA says some of the birds did not have proper access to food or water. They are now being cared for by several animal rescue groups.MORE NEWS: Starting Tuesday, Allina Clinics In Minnesota Will Start Vaccinating 12- To 15-Year-Olds
The brothers are due in court in July.