Irish jockey denies race corruption
Published 21/05/2011 | 05:00
AN Irish jockey has been charged with serious breaches of the rules of racing following a corruption investigation by UK authorities.
Jimmy Quinn (44), as well as three other jockeys and a former rider, are alleged to have conspired to commit a corrupt or fraudulent practice.
It follows an investigation into suspicious betting activity on a number of races by the British Horseracing Authority (BHA).
Quinn is Irish but has an address in Newmarket in the UK.
The BHA has charged a total of 13 people with serious rule violations.
The body said the case focuses on 10 races that took place between January 17, 2009 and August 15, 2009 where large bets were placed on horses to lose.
The jockeys -- Paul Doe, Greg Fairley, Paul Fitzsimons, Kirsty Milczarek and Quinn -- have been charged with "failing to ensure that their horse was run on its merits".
Owners Maurice Sines and James Crickmore, along with six others, are charged with giving the jockeys "inside information in relation to the named horse" in return for "material reward, gift, favour or benefit in kind".
Quinn has been charged in relation to two races.
Solicitor Andrew Chalk said Quinn is particularly frustrated.
"Jimmy is sending in the paperwork as the charges have only just arrived, so we will look closer at the situation at the beginning of next week," he said.
"Jimmy is pulling his hair out and is particularly frustrated. He feels he has co-operated fully with the investigation, having answered all of the appropriate questions with honesty. He is dismayed at the charges, and is adamant he has done nothing wrong."
An independent disciplinary panel hearing has been set for October 20 and is scheduled to last 10 days.
Chris Brand, acting chief executive of the BHA, said that protecting the integrity of racing is "a key priority" for the body.
"Racegoers and punters should be reassured that the overwhelming majority of races are free of suspicion and we are committed to deterring and detecting wrong-doing and taking action when we believe there is evidence of it," he said.
"The charges issued by the Authority are the result of a lengthy, detailed and complex investigation, following suspicious betting activity on more than one betting exchange and with traditional bookmakers."
The guideline penalty for any jockey found guilty of "deliberately not riding a horse to obtain the best possible placing for personal reward or knowing it has been laid to lose" is a disqualification of between five and 25 years.
The four jockeys will still be able to ride until the hearing begins in October.