ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – The federal government is calling it a nationwide dogfighting ring, and according to agents a major player is based in Albuquerque.
Robert Arellano, 64, is facing two separate federal indictments, but he told KRQE News 13 the feds have it all wrong.
There are still a handful of dog houses staggered around Arellano’s North Valley property, but all of them seem to be empty. That’s because in 2016, federal agents wiped the home clean.
According to a 2017 court document, they took everything including “14 pit bull type dogs.” They recovered more than 1,000 photos of other dogs, dogfighting videos, books and magazines. In one magazine, agents said Arellano was interviewed about his “dogfighting operation.”
Agents said they also found steroids, syringes, and IVs containing canine blood.
Thursday, when KRQE News 13 caught up with him at his home, he claimed all of the accusations are false.
According to the feds they found “shipping records” that prove Arellano was breeding fighting dogs, selling and shipping them to people in other states.
He was indicted last year by the federal government in New Mexico as well as New Jersey, along with others who the feds said took part in this “dogfighting ring.”
According to investigators, the case is far from over.
In November 2017, agents filed an “application for a search warrant.” They’re seeking permission to search an email account belonging to Arellano’s son. Although they said he died in 2012, according to agents, Arellano and his wife used the account to sell dogs to other “dog fighters” in different parts of the country.
Arellano denied that accusation as well.
“No. I don’t know anything about that,” he said. “I’m not into the computer at all.”
Arellano said he’s headed to New Jersey soon for a court date. He also said he’s pleading not guilty in both cases.