One of two individuals detained in Maryland last month on charges of involvement in an illegal dogfighting organization was a high-ranking Pentagon officer.
U.S. District Attorney for Maryland, Rod Rosenstein, unsealed the case against 62-year-old Frederick Douglass Moorefield Jr. and 49-year-old Mario Damon Flythe on Monday, as NTD News reported.
The homes of Moorefield and Flythe in Maryland were searched on September 6 and the two men made their initial court appearances on September 28.
Moorefield's position in the Department of Defense's Office of the Secretary of Defense's Command, Control, and Communications (C3) was confirmed by the federal prosecutor's office.
Moorefield's profile on the Department of Defense website states that he worked as a technical advisor on defense-wide C3 projects and methods to "maintain information dominance for the Department of Defense."
Federal prosecutors claim that Moorefield and Flythe each ran their own illegal dogfighting operations, but that they communicated via the encrypted messaging app Telegram to share information about dogfighting training regimens and videos, as well as to arrange and coordinate fights.
The two allegedly also talked about dog deaths, betting on dog fights, and media coverage of other dogfighting businesses being busted by law enforcement.
Alleged dogfighting operations run by Moorefield were known as "Geehad Kennels," while those run by Flythe were known as "Razor Sharp Kennels."
After indicting six persons connected to similar animal-fighting businesses, authorities in Virginia's Eastern federal court district allegedly learned of dogfighting rings that communicated over Telegram for the first time.
These six individuals pleaded guilty and disclosed to authorities their involvement in a dogfighting Telegram channel known as "the DMV Board" or "the Board."
Using these clues, authorities were able to link Moorefield to a dogfighting schedule for June 2020 that referenced the phrase "Geehad" and was distributed by an organization called "the DMV Board."
According to the prosecution, two canine bodies were discovered in a plastic dog food bag in Anne Arundel County in November of 2018.
There was also mail for Moorefield in the bag. The ASPCA was called in to conduct an autopsy on the two dead dogs, and while they were unable to determine a direct cause of death, they did find signs of previous dogfights, including fresh and healed scars on both animals.
The prosecution believes the two canines died in their individual fights or were euthanized because of their poor performance.
Police said they found dog training schedules, veterinary medical supplies, a weighted vest designed to suit a dog's body, and a gadget made of automobile jumper cables connected to an electrical connection after serving a search warrant at Moorefield's residence.
The prosecution claims the gadget might be used to kill a stray dog by shocking it with electricity. A rolled-up rug with heavy, reddish-brown stains was also discovered by the police, and the prosecution believes these stains originated from blood spilled during many battles.
Five canines of a "pit bull-type" breed were rescued from Moorefield's house by the authorities. Seven other "pit bull-type" canines were rescued from Mr. Flythe's home by authorities.
Four counts have been filed against both Moorefield and Flythe:
Use of the mail or other interstate instrumentality for the purpose of promoting or furthering an animal fighting venture; Purchasing, selling, delivering, possessing, training, or transporting animals for use in an animal fighting venture; Animal fighting sponsorship and public display conspiracies; interstate and international travel and transportation in support of racketeering operations.
In response to a request for comment about Moorefield, Pentagon spokesman Lt. Cmdr. Tim Gorman replied, “We are aware of the criminal complaint in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland. We can confirm that the individual is no longer in the workplace, but we cannot comment further on an individual personnel matter."