A MAN trained vicious fighting dogs so dangerous that a judge said they could have killed someone.

Nasar Khan, 25, of July Street, Blackburn, was jailed for four months after a court heard how he transformed a terraced house in the street into a pitbull training centre complete with treadmill and steroids.

District Judge Peter Ward said the nine dogs kept in the property were capable of inflicting "terrible and fatal injuries both to other dogs and to people."

The training centre, which was just doors from Khan's home, was discovered when one of the animals escaped in January and was spotted by local residents roaming the streets.

Mr David Traynor, prosecuting, told Preston magistrates that the dogs were so vicious that after they were seized by police one of the animals escaped from his cage in the back of a van on the way to kennels and mauled another so badly that it had to be put down.

Judge Ward said: "It is clear that these dogs were being trained to bite and the potential danger to the public was significant."

All nine of the dogs have now been put down but not before kennelling costs reached over 15,000. That cost must now be met by the taxpayer after Khan, who is unemployed, was jailed.

The court heard that the house in July Street was raided by police after a dog warden was called to seize one of the dogs that had escaped.

The house which was owned by Khan's family, had been completely cleared of furniture and the treadmill had been specially adapted so a dog's collar could be attached forcing the animal to run.

Blood was discovered in the house as were steroids and muscle-building chemicals. Each dog was caged individually around the property.

Khan had earlier pleaded guilty to eight charges of owning fighting dogs and one of allowing one of the dogs to be in a public place without a muzzle or lead. He said he was not training the dogs for fighting, but was "fascinated" by them and wanted them to grow big and muscular.

Aftab Bakhat, defending, said that Khan was an "extremely stupid man" and did not realise that what he was doing was illegal.

But Judge Ward said: "He may have been naive but it seems to me that these are dogs that have been prepared for fighting and have been involved in some fighting."

After the case, RSPCA spokesman Sophie Corless said: "Sadly large numbers of pitbull types are still being kept for the wrong reasons - seen as macho status symbols for the purpose of organised dog fighting.

"Either way the dog's welfare is unnecessarily put at great risk by their owners. It is a brutal crime."