Man charged with dog fighting ring has history of animal abuse

A Detroit man faced a judge, accused of animal cruelty for his alleged role in a dog fighting ring.

Julian Akyan, 29, was in court Monday charged with possession of dogs used for alleged fighting, and for being a felon in possession of a firearm.

Last week investigators say they received a tip about a suspected dog fighting ring that led them to four properties, including Akyan's residence. 

As FOX 2 captured video of Friday's raid, Peggy Kleiner became emotional as she claimed that the dogs were their pets. 

According to information from investigators, the grand champion fighting dog was removed from one of the properties as well as items connected to dog fighting.

"We're very excited to have been able to remove 35 dogs from this horrendous life," said Elise Ramsey, Michigan Humane Society. 

Investigators would not show any pictures of the dogs but say their injuries are consistent with dog fighting. 

"A lot of the dogs were extremely underweight, definitely neglected and a lot of scars from what I would believe, is a number of years of fighting," said Ramsey. 

FOX 2: "Was this for profit?"

"I believe so. This is very lucrative to be involved in," Ramsey said. 

Investigators also say the suspect has a criminal past and was investigated before on accusations of dog fighting.

"In 2008 this suspect plead guilty to attempt animal fighting," Ramsey said. "It was a very large number of people located in dog fight in progress."

Back in court Akyan's bond was set at $50,000, 10-percent and as the case continues he can't have any contact with animals.

As for the animals that are part of alleged dog fighting. Investigators say they're not ready just yet for adoption. 

"We're not at that point yet," Ramsey said. "We are letting these dogs decompress and understand they no longer have to live on chains and fight."