Co-Defendant Pleads Guilty

One of Michael Vick's co-defendants pleaded guilty Monday to his role in a dogfighting conspiracy that he says was financed almost entirely by the Atlanta Falcons quarterback.

As part of a plea agreement, 34-year-old Tony Taylor of Hampton pledged to fully cooperate with the government in its prosecution of Vick and two other men accused of running an interstate dogfighting enterprise known as "Bad Newz Kennels" on Vick's property in rural Surry County.

The plea agreement signed by Taylor includes a statement of facts that says "The `Bad Newz Kennels' operation and gambling monies were almost exclusively funded by Vick."

The plea deal requires Taylor to testify against Vick and his two remaining co-defendants if called upon to do so. Under the agreement, Taylor cannot get a stiffer sentence or face any new charges based on any new information he provides.

But additional charges are possible against Vick and the other two. Vick's lead attorney, Billy Martin, did not return a phone message left by The Associated Press.

Vick, along with 35-year-old Purnell Peace of Virginia Beach and 28-year-old Quanis Phillips of Atlanta, are scheduled for trial November 26. They remain free without bond.


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