WASHINGTON, Ga. (WJBF) – Nearly 100 dogs were rescued as a result of an animal fighting investigation in three Georgia counties, including Washington County.

The investigation, led by the U.S. Department of Agriculture Office of Inspector General, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, and the Laurens County Sheriff’s Office, culminated in the execution of seven search warrants in Laurens, Johnson, and Washington counties, with a total of 96 dogs rescued, said David H. Estes, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia.

The animals that were rescued in the operation are in the custody of the USDA and are being evaluated.

The continuing investigation, with the assistance of personnel from the Laurens County Sheriff’s Office, the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office, and the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, targets animal fighting operations in the Southern District and beyond.