Dog Fighting Conspiracy Charged
March 22, 2010 - A. Courtney Cox, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, announced today that on March 18, 2010, a federal grand jury sitting in East St. Louis returned an indictment charging JUDIOUS KIZEART, age 41, of Springfield, Illinois; BRENT CASH, age 31, of Eldon, Missouri; DARRYL MADISON, age 28, of St. Louis, Missouri; THADIUS PAGE, age 33, of Fairview Heights, Illinois; TERRILL CLARK, age 33, of Lithonia, Georgia; MICHAEL WILLIAMS, age 29, of Red Bud, Illinois; and GARY PAYNE, age 48, of St. Louis, Missouri, with one count of Conspiracy to Commit Unlawful Activities of Dog Fighting. The violation allegedly took place between November 18, 2008 and, at least, April 18, 2009 in St. Clair County, Illinois.
If convicted, each defendant faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison, a fine of up to $250,000, and three years of supervised release to follow any term of imprisonment.
An indictment is a formal charge against a defendant. Under the law, a defendant is presumed to be innocent of a charge and is entitled to a fair trial at which the government must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
Headed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Office of Inspector General, this dog fighting investigation is the latest in a series of major animal fighting investigations conducted throughout the country since the passage of the Animal Fighting Prohibition Enforcement Act, signed into law in May 2007, which makes it a felony to participate in the blood sport. Participating in the investigation were the Missouri State Highway Patrol, the Humane Society of Missouri, the United States Department of Agriculture Office of Inspector General, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The case is assigned to Assistant United States Attorneys Jennifer Hudson and Mike Thompson.