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Servis Among 27 Indicted On Federal Charges Related To Performance-Enhancing Drugs
|| Servis Among 27 Indicted On Federal Charges Related To Performance-Enhancing Drugs
|The Paulick Report | by Natalie Voss | 03.09.2020 | 10:24am|
Navarro, Servis Among 27 Indicted On Federal Charges Related To Performance-Enhancing Drugs:
"Trainers Jorge Navarro and Jason Servis are among 27 people indicted on federal charges in connection with the use of performance-enhancing drugs on racehorses, according to indictments released Monday by the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York.--end quote
Alongside Navarro and Servis, several assistant trainers, veterinarians, pharmacists and drug distributors are also named on a variety of charges related to drugs that were mislabeled or misbranded. According to evidence taken by federal investigators, those products were (or purported to be) blocking agents, masking agents, EPO agents, and products similar to clenbuterol and Viagra.
Indictments described complex systems set up by each trainer to get performance-enhancing drugs into their barn while evading detection of state and federal agents.
According to federal prosecutors, Navarro relied upon his assistant trainers, veterinarians, and other trainers to help him acquire and administer performance enhancers. He is charged with drug adulteration and misbranding conspiracy alongside Dr. Erica Garcia, Marcos Zulueta, Dr. Greg Skelton, trainer Michael Tannuzzo, Ross Cohen, Dr. Seth Fishman, harness trainer Christopher Oakes and harness trainer Nicholas Zurick. The indictment maintains the group was involved in “a corrupt scheme to manufacture, create, purchase, distribute, transport, sell and administer a wide variety of misbranded and adulterated PEDs.”
Navarro allegedly administered PEDs himself, and also directed veterinarians to do so. The indictment claims Navarro spent “tens of thousands of dollars” on PEDs sourced by Fishman from “at least” January 2017 to April 2019. Fishman procured a blood builder for Navarro, while Skelton is accused of selling an analgesic and joint block. Surick is accused of supplying Navarro with “red acid,” a customized agent to reduce inflammation in joints. Oakes allegedly procured a performance-enhancing “drench” to “rapidly increase a racehorse's performance.” The drench was supposed to be undetectable in drug tests.
The drug program described in the indictment carried risk to Navarro's horses. In an intercepted phone call between Surick and Tannuzzo, Surick stated: “You know how many [censored] horses he [Navarro] [censored] killed and broke down that I made disappear … You know how much trouble he could get in … if they found out … the six horses we killed?”"
|Associated Press | By STEPHEN WHYNO | 03-09-2020|
Trainers, vets, others charged in horse-drugging scheme:
More than two dozen people, including the trainer of champion Maximum Security, have been charged in what authorities described Monday as a widespread international scheme to drug horses to make them race faster.
Trainer Jason Servis, whose stable includes the 3-year-old champion, was charged with administering performance-enhancing drugs to that horse and others. Maximum Security crossed the finish line first at the 2019 Kentucky Derby before being disqualified for interference and has since won four of his five high-profile races.
The charges against trainers, veterinarians and others were detailed in four indictments unveiled Monday in Manhattan federal court. Charges brought against the 27 people include drug adulteration and misbranding conspiracy.
U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman scheduled a news conference in New York City to discuss the charges, which authorities said affected races in New York, New Jersey, Florida, Ohio, Kentucky and the United Arab Emirates.
Authorities said participants in the fraud misled government agencies, including federal and state regulators, U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents, various state horse racing regulators and the betting public.
In the indictment, Servis is charged with giving Maximum Security a performance-enhancing drug called SGF-1000, recommending it to another trainer, and conspiring with a veterinarian to make it look like a false positive for another substance. The other trainer, Jorge Navarro, is also among those charged.
Maximum Security on Feb. 29 won the world’s richest race, the $10 million Saudi Cup.
Servis is alleged to have given performance-enhancing drugs to “virtually all the racehorses under his control.” He entered horses in races approximately 1,082 times from 2018 through February 2020, according to authorities.
“The charges in this indictment result from a widespread, corrupt scheme by racehorse trainers, veterinarians, PED (performance-enhancing drug) distributors and others to manufacture, distribute and receive adulterated and misbranded PEDs and to secretly administer those PEDs to racehorses under scheme participants’ control,” an indictment reads.
Prosecutors noted in indictments that professional horse racing is a $100 billion industry followed by millions of fans worldwide, leading racehorses to sell at auction for well over $1 million.
“A sad day for racing but a long time coming,” trainer Graham Motion tweeted. “A good day for those who try to play by the rules, we will all be better for it.”
Imo, a long time in coming. The game will be better off in the long run.
|Link to the indictments at the DOJ site:|
Imo, worth reading.