Three men arrested in cockfighting raid in Oasis

Deputies say about 100 people fled the scene when they arrived

POSTED: 06:11 AM PDT Apr 08, 2013    UPDATED: 07:24 AM PDT Apr 08, 2013 
Oasis, CALIF. -

Three men were arrested and booked on suspicion of animal cruelty after sheriff's deputies raided the site of a cockfight in Oasis, authorities said Monday.

The deputies, responding to a report of a cockfight on Avenue 86 east of  the Highway 86 Expressway, arrived at the location at 8:26 a.m. Sunday, said  Riverside County sheriff's Sgt. Robert Bishop.

"Deputies immediately observed over 100 subjects fleeing the area on  foot and inside vehicles," Bishop said. "Three suspects were immediately  apprehended."

Deputies aided by U.S. Border Patrol agents and a California Highway  Patrol airplane crew searched for more suspects, but none were nabbed, Bishop  said.

Deputies and identification technicians processing the scene for evidence  found more than 60 roosters inside cages, cardboard boxes or laying in the  dirt, he said. They called in Riverside County Animal Control officers to attend to the animals.

Joseph Furtado, 54, of Blythe, Jonathon Zamudio, 18, of Mecca, and  Eusebio Silva, 27, of North Shore, were booked into the Indio Larson Justice  Center on suspicion of animal cruelty, Bishop said. Bail was set at $2,500,  according to the sheriff's department's jail records, and all three men were  released later in the day, with their next court appearance set for June 10.

Anyone with information about the incident or any other cases of  cockfighting was urged to call the sheriff's Thermal Station at (760) 863-8990.