RICHMOND, Va. (AP) -- A man who sold a female pit bull to Michael Vick's dogfighting operation and attended some of the fights escaped prison time today because he cooperated with investigators and did NOT physically harm any of the dogs.
Oscar Allen was sentenced to three years probation and fined $500 for his limited involvement in the Bad Newz Kennels dogfighting ring that operated out of Vick's 15-acre spread in rural Surry County, Virginia.
Vick, the suspended star quarterback for the Atlanta Falcons, was sentenced in December to 23 months in federal prison. Three co-defendants also have been sentenced to prison terms.
U.S. District Judge Henry Hudson told the 67-year-old Allen during the sentencing in Richmond, Virginia, that his case is in "a clearly different class" than the other defendants. But the judge also noted that Allen had cooperated.
Allen -- who is from the Williamsburg area -- pleaded guilty in October to conspiracy to travel in interstate commerce to aid in illegal gambling and to sponsor a dog in animal fighting. It's the same charge to which Vick and the other three men pleaded guilty.
Allen faced a maximum of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. But federal prosecutors recommended that he spend no time in prison because he cooperated with investigators, had no prior criminal record and was a minor player in Vick's dogfighting enterprise.