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Trainer Beattie At Rojas Trial: Almost Everybody Illegally Treated Horses On Race Day
|| Trainer Beattie At Rojas Trial: Almost Everybody Illegally Treated Horses On Race Day
|by Ray Paulick | 06.28.2017 | 10:38am|
Trainer Beattie At Rojas Trial: 'Almost Everybody' Illegally Treated Horses On Race Day:
"Stephanie Beattie threw fellow horsemen under the bus during her testimony for the prosecution Tuesday afternoon at the federal trial of Murray Rojas, a former rival for leading trainer honors at Penn National in Grantville, Pa.--end quote
Beattie admitted she routinely had her horses illegally treated with therapeutic medications on race day by the same veterinarians who counted Rojas as a client.
"Almost everybody did," Beattie said of the practice. "Ninety-five to 98%. It was a known practice. We wanted to win and they weren't testing for those drugs at that time."
Beattie, 46, won enough races to be Penn National's leading trainer on three occasions. In 2009, her best year, she won 222 races from 811 starts for earnings of $3.4 million. The previous year, when she won 212 races from 612 starts, she had a win percentage of 35 percent.
But it is two-time Penn National leading trainer Rojas, not Beattie, who is on trial for wire fraud, conspiracy and misbranding of prescription drugs. U.S. Attorney William Behe has laid out a case with testimony and documents from racing officials, veterinarians and vet assistants alleging Rojas requested and received race-day treatment of horses in order to win purse money, then had billing and treatment records falsified to conceal the cheating.
Beattie is among numerous individuals at Penn National under investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. She resisted cooperating with the FBI at first, Beattie testified, even after Special Agent Bruce Doupe told her, "If you don't want to talk, I'll come to your house at 4:30 in the morning, handcuff you and put you in jail for a very long time."
Finally, Beattie said, after spending more than $60,000 on legal advice, she decided to cooperate with authorities, submitting to numerous interviews and even wearing a recording device on their behalf.
Despite admitting to years of rule violations in multiple states, Beattie has not been sanctioned by any racing commissions and has faced no criminal charges. It has hurt her business, as shown by a 2016 record of 14 wins from 111 starts and earnings of $217,655.
"This investigation has made things tough for me," she said.
Beattie also said she has stopped cheating with race-day treatments.
Beattie explained how veterinarian Kevin Brophy established an order form for trainers to fill out their race day medication requests. She said her lists regularly included Kentucky Red, Estrone and Amicar – substances that are not permitted within 24 hours of a race.
Beattie testified that Brophy and other veterinarians informed her of which drugs the state's testing lab was not testing for.
On Monday, Brophy's associate veterinarian, Fernando Motta, testified that Rojas regularly requested and received treatments of Robinul and Estrone on race day for her horses. Motta beat the test for Robinul, he testified, by administering a lower dose and changing the route of administration to intravenous from intramuscular."
If even half of Beattie's testimony is true -- it paints a picture of widespread cheating in Pennsylvania.
IMO, it isn't too much of a reach to think this (or similar) isn't limited to Pennsylvania.
|by Ray Paulick | 07.05.2017 | 10:59am|
View From The Eighth Pole: In Rojas Trial, HBPA Plays The Part Of Enabler:
"The evidence in the case was abundant. Internal records at veterinary practices run by Drs. Kevin Brophy and Fernando Motta showed Rojas requested race day treatments of therapeutic drugs in violation of Pennsylvania rules and regulations. Treatments were performed by veterinarians Brophy, Motta, Christopher Korte and Renee Nodine, who then had invoices backdated and racing commission treatment records falsified to avoid detection. The four veterinarians pleaded guilty in April 2015 to illegally administering drugs to horses and cooperated with the prosecution.--end quote
This was not a case built around a positive test resulting from accidental contamination of a human drug or a picogram overage of a therapeutic medication. It was ongoing, organized cheating – gaming the system at the expense of honest owners and trainers and sticking up the middle finger in the face of horseplayers.
So why on earth would the National HBPA and its Pennsylvania affiliate put up a nickel to defend Rojas?
During a break in the proceedings last Tuesday, Todd Mostoller, the Pennsylvania HBPA's executive director, told me his organization helped pay for the defense over a concern that the next time a trainer gets a bad test for a minor overage of a therapeutic drug, he or she will wind up in federal court facing a felony charge.
That argument is preposterous scaremongering, falsely setting the federal government up as a bogeyman.
To compare a minor drug overage to the cesspool of cheating and corruption at Penn National indicates how grossly out of touch with reality Mostoller and his associate at the National HBPA, chief executive officer Eric Hamelback, have become."
|I would make the argument that the FBI did not go far enough.|
All of the trial coverage that I've read says that the charges of wire fraud were based on purse monies paid out across state lines.
Once federal prosecutors realized they had uncovered a pattern of rampant cheating in Pennsylvania:
Did they somehow think that BETTORS who wagered on Pennsylvania races across state lines had not been defrauded?
Did it not occur to them to bring at least one horseplayer to the witness stand whose ADW account showed multiple win bets with second place finishes in races that were won by horses trained by Rojas or Beattie?
I have a hard time believing that no wire fraud actually took place.
|This is very sad.|
Anyone associated with this theft of player’s money should be jailed, fined, and never allowed at any race track.
The tracks are culpable for letting this continue. They need the horses so they let it continue.
Pen should be shut down.
What good is it to have data files to do the research to find an edge in this sport when the game is rigged
Again, very sad