13 Charged in British Betting Scandal

The British Horseracing Authority announced May 20 it has charged 13 individuals with violating the Rules of Racing following an investigation into betting activity on races run in 2009.

According to the BHA, the investigation focused on horses being laid to lose on betting exchanges in 10 races that took place between Jan. 17 and Aug. 15, 2009. The Racing Post has reported that three of the eight horses were favorites for their races.

Charged are registered owners Maurice Sines and James Crickmore and licensed jockeys Paul Doe, Greg Fairley, Paul Fitzsimons (no longer a jockey but now a licensed trainer), Kirsty Milczarek and Jimmy Quinn. If the charges are upheld, they can expect to be disqualified from racing for a minimum of five years and a maximum of 25, though the “entry point” for the offense -- if there are no aggravating or mitigating factors -- is an eight-year ban.

The other six are Peter Gold, Nick Gold, Shaun Harris, David Kendrick, Darren May and Liam Vasey, who have all been charged with a breach of Rule 201(v) of the old Rules of Racing, alleging they conspired to commit a corrupt or fraudulent practice.

According to the BHA, all of the individuals, except the jockeys, are alternatively/additionally charged with a breach of Rule 220(ix) of the old Rules of Racing. They allegedly caused the jockey in the race to act in breach of Rule 243 by communicating to him directly or indirectly, at his request and for material reward, gift, favor or benefit in kind, inside information in relation to the named horse.

Each of the jockeys is also charged with a breach of Rule 243 of the old Rules of Racing in that it is alleged they “communicated directly or indirectly to one or more betting exchange account holders, for material reward, gift, favor or benefit in kind, information relating to the prospects of the named horse(s):

In relation to two of the races, Sines and Crickmore are also charged with a breach of Rule 247 of the old Rules of Racing in that it is alleged that they ”instructed others to place lay bets on their behalf and/or received the whole or any part of the proceeds of such bets when they were the owners of the named horse.”

Sines is additionally charged with a breach of Rule (A)50.2.2 in that he refused to attend an interview with BHA investigators.

Each jockey is also charged with a breach or breaches of Rule 157 of the old Rules of Racing in that it is alleged they intentionally failed to ensure that their horse was run on its merits in some of the races.

Possible penalties for the infractions cited in the charges are:

— Rule 157 (now Rule (B)59.2) – Deliberately not riding a horse to obtain the best possible placing for personal reward or knowing it has been laid to lose, 5 to 25 years disqualified, entry point of 8 years
— Rule 201(v) (now Rule (A)41) – Corrupt or Fraudulent Practice; 6 months to 10 years, entry point of 3 years
— Rule 220(ix) (now Rule (A)42) – Causing a licensed person to breach the betting/inside information rules; 3 months to 10 years, entry point of 6 months
— Rule 243 (now Rule (A)36) – Passing information for reward; 18 months to 5 years, entry point 3 years
— Rule 247 (now Rule (E)92.2) – Owner lays a horse he owns to lose; 3 months to 10 years, entry point of 18 months
— Rule (A)50.2 – Fails to agree / attend an interview; 1 month to 3 years / £1,000 to £5,000, entry point of 3 months/£2,000
 

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