A THUG jailed at Christmas for knocking out a 15-year-old boy has admitted organising animal fights in Poole.

Martyn Dashwood pleaded guilty to 16 charges of arranging and attending animal fights and animal cruelty at Bournemouth Magistrates’ Court.

The 32-year-old admitted two counts of causing unnecessary cruelty to a cock bird by failing to provide adequate veterinary care for an eye injury, and on another occasion by “allowing it to continue fighting whilst injured”.

He admitted six counts of causing an animal fight to take place in both Belben Road and Oak Drive in Poole between September 2011 and March 2013, and eight counts of being present at animal fights in Belben Road, Bere Road, Coldharbour, and elsewhere in Dorset between December 2011 and April 2013.

A further 11 charges were dropped by the Crown Prosecution Service after his guilty pleas were entered.

Dashwood, of Oak Drive, Poole, was released on bail to return to court for sentencing on May 7.

A spokesman for the RSPCA said: “Cockfighting was banned in England way back in 1835.

“Yet here we are in 2014, seeing someone appear in court for acts of cruelty which were outlawed almost 180 years ago.

“There is no glory in watching birds die horrific deaths in the name of a so called blood sport.”

Dashwood was jailed for 12 weeks in December last year after admitting he punched and stamped on a 15-year-old boy during an argument between two groups of children at Baiter Park on September 8, 2012.

Then, Bournemouth Magistrates’ Court heard that, as he walked off, Dashwood shouted: “I’m Martyn Dashwood, I’m in the Mafia, you shouldn’t mess with me.”

At the time the victim, who suffered problems sleeping as a result of the assault, described his assailant as “a thug and a bully” in a statement to police.