27 individuals have been named in a Manhattan court for a drug adulteration and misbranding conspiracy. This is being dubbed a widespread international scheme to drug horses to race faster. Professional horse racing is a $100 billion industry and some horse even auction for up to $1 Million on the open market, with stud fees just as high for horses with a winning pedigree.
Races effected will be in New York, New Jersey, Florida, Ohio, Kentucky and the United Arab Emirates. One person charged was Jason Servis, trainer of Maximum Security, accused of using drugs on "virtually all the racehorses under his control," according to the indictment. Maximum Security originally finished first in the Kentucky Derby before being disqualified for interference (and cost me money). The horse also won the Florida Derby, Haskell Invitational, Bold Ruler Handicap and Cigar Mile. Recently, Maximum Security took the $10 million winner's share at the inaugural Saudi Cup, the world's richest race.
Authorities say the drugs can cause horses to overexert themselves, leading to heart issues or death. The indictments said other drugs used to deaden a horse's sensitivity to pain to improve the horse's performance could also lead to leg fractures.
No word yet on how much time could be served or amount of fines levied for the charges detailed in 4 indictments.