Officials in Surrey broke up an alleged cockfighting ring involving more than 1200 fighting birds, three properties and dozens of people, they said on Friday.Surrey RCMP, Surrey bylaw officials and B.C. SPCA constables raided three properties in the Cloverdale area and found cockfighting pits, more than one thousand birds tethered to barrels and all manner of cockfighting paraphernalia.The investigation lasted several years and is the largest such raid in Canadian history.Officials were forced to euthanize the birds according to the criminal code, which states that fighting birds found on a property with a cockfighting pit must be destroyed.One of the properties did not have a cockpit, and approximately fifty birds were not euthanized.Senior Animal Protection Officer Eileen Drever of the SPCA broke down and cried as she described how members of the SPCA were forced to euthanize the birds.She said the current laws to deter such crimes are "woefully inadequate," and the SPCA is recommending charges for up to thirty individuals involved.Shawn Eccles, chief animal protection officer with the SPCA, told reporters the euthanization goes against the SPCA's mandate."Euthanizing animals is incredibly emotional, and to have to do this on such a large scale goes against everything we stand for as an animal protection society," he said.A neighbour told CTV News the owner of one of the properties claimed to be raising roosters to ship to the Philippines. The neighbour said he often heard loud music and parties on Friday nights, and witnessed police cars on the property on Thursday.Cockfighting is a centuries-old blood sport in which specially bred roosters fight each other and onlookers gamble on the results. The practice is illegal in Canada.