Arrests in race-fixing and cocaine trafficking probe in Australian horse racing

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A police investigation into race-fixing and cocaine trafficking in Australian horse racing resulted in two arrests being made in Victoria.

Victoria Police's Sporting Integrity Intelligence Unit (SIIU) arrested a 47-year-old woman and a 38-year-old man after executing a number of raids in the early hours of Wednesday morning.

Both the woman and the man were questioned on charges relating to race-fixing and conspiracy to defraud racing stewards in the state.

The man also faced an inquiry into alleged cocaine trafficking.

Both suspects were released later on Wednesday by the authorities, although investigations into the allegations continue.

One of the investigating officers, Superintendent Steve White, spoke to the media after the dramatic day. White reinforced the commitment of the authorities in Victoria to rooting out corruption.

He said: "Victorians are well known for their love of sport but equally they want to know that the playing field is fair and honest.

"We also know that the various sporting codes, such as the racing bodies we have been assisted by as part of this investigation, feel the same as police and the broader public.

"I can assure the public that Victoria Police take matters of corruption in sport seriously.

"We will continue to work with our stakeholders to target, disrupt and apprehend people who commit these offences. Today's warrants also reinforce that police are prepared to investigate any and all allegations of corruption in sport."

Racing Victoria, the governing body of horse racing, harness racing and greyhound racing in the state, confirmed their knowledge of events, but didn't make any comprehensive comments.

They released a statement saying: "Racing Victoria confirms that it is aware that Victoria Police’s Sporting Integrity Intelligence Unit has today arrested two people as part of an investigation into alleged illegal activity within the racing industry.

"Whilst the matter remains the subject of an ongoing investigation by Victoria Police we will not be making any further comment."

Australian racing is no stranger to incidents of controversy.

The most infamous recent scandal in the sport was the revelation that top trainer Darren Weir was using electric shock equipment on his horses as they raced.

  • Horse racing

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