A federal grand jury has indicted 18 defendants on various charges in connection with a cockfighting operation in Irrigon, Oregon, involving ten "derbies" occurring from April 1, 2012, through May 19, 2013. Some of those arrested are from the Yakima area.

Indictments unsealed Thursday in U.S. District Court in Portland charge 67-year-old John Wesley Walker and his wife, 60-year-old Irina Walker, with holding cockfighting derbies where people gambled illegally at their ranch outside Irrigon.

Irinia Walker, also known as Irina Kreuger, as a daughter of the last king of Romania. Personnel records show her husband was a Coos County sheriff's deputy from 1998 to 2003.

The other defendants were arrested Thursday in various cities across Oregon and Washington.

Those arrested in Oregon are scheduled to appear for arraignment before a federal magistrate judge in Portland this afternoon.

Those arrested in Washington will appear for arraignment before a federal magistrate judge in Yakima next week.

Six individuals are charged with operating an illegal gambling business:

    John Wesley Walker, 67, of Irrigon;
    Irina Walker (aka Irina Kreuger), 60, of Irrigon;
    Mario Perez (aka El Cuba), 62, of Hermiston, Oregon;
    David Sanchez, 29, of Irrigon;
    Jose Luis Virgen Ramirez, 48, of Hermiston; and
    Aurelia Garcia Mendoza, 33, of Irrigon.

These six persons are also charged, along with 12 others, with conspiracy to violate the Animal Welfare Act by conducting unlawful animal fighting ventures on ten occasions. The additional defendants are:

    Apolinar Munoz Gutierrez (aka Polo), 37, of Irrigon;
    Cecilio Mendoza Magana, 63, of Kennewick, Washington;
    Mauro Gonzalez Pulido (aka Cala), 47, of Zillah, Washington;
    Ruben Saltos Godina (aka Chino), 42, of Moxee, Washington;
    Arturo Olmedo Silva (aka El Havolin, Cepillo), 45, of Hermiston;
    Eduardo Cisneros (aka Mariachi), 27, of Sunnyside, Washington;
    Eulalio Delamora Anguiano (aka Lalo), 44 of Moxee, Washington;
    Francisco Javier Vega (aka Sergio Gonzalez Manzano), 39, of Plymouth, Washington;
    Oscar Acosta Navarrete, 46, of Prosser, Washington;
    Antonio Dominguez Robles (aka Tono, Memo), 37, of Pasco, Washington;
    Gerardo Gomez Castillo (aka Aguilo), 54, of Wapato, Washington; and
    Valente Piedra Magana, 38, of Union Gap, Washington.

Each of the charged offenses – illegal gambling (one count), unlawful animal fighting venture (ten counts), and conspiracy (one count) – carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison and a fine of $250,000.

The indictment also alleges that, upon conviction of illegal gambling, defendants John Wesley Walker and Irina Walker are subject to the forfeiture of their real property and buildings used in the gambling business, located on Depot Lane in Irrigon.

Federal agents have arrested an Eastern Oregon couple and several others in connection with an alleged cockfighting ring.