Proposal: Abuse Animals, Lose Assets

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) _ The head of the Hillsborough County Board of Commissioners says he’s seen enough stories about dog fighting, cockfighting and people torturing animals.

Tampa’s Fox 13 ( reports that Commission Chairman Ken Hagan wants to toughen up the penalties for those convicted.

Hagan says authorities should to be able to seize property and assets of people convicted of felony animal cruelty _ similar to drug dealers.

Hagan will discuss his plan with the commission on Wednesday.

His proposal was inspired by December’s bust of a dog fighting ring in Seffner.

Investigators say one of the men bragged that they’d been fighting dogs on that property for 20 years.

Hagan says once someone is convicted and actually loses property, and possibly money, it could be just the deterrent they’ve been looking for.