federal court

Giannelli Appeals Conviction, 3 1/2-Year Sentence

Lisa Giannelli, who was sentenced to 3 1/2 years in prison Sept. 8 after being found guilty of peddling purportedly performance-enhancing drugs as a years-long protégé under the recently convicted drug-dealing veterinarian Seth Fishman, filed a formal notice of appeal for both her conviction and sentence in federal court Sept. 21. Giannelli, 56, of Dalton, Delaware, was also ordered to pay a fine of $100,000 and to forfeit $900,000. "This was not a one-time thing," Judge Mary Kay Vyskocil of U.S. District Court (Southern District of New York) said at...

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ITHA vs. Arlington to Federal Court

A $775,000 purse account dispute between the Illinois Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association (ITHA) and Arlington International Racecourse, LLC, that has simmered for over half a year got escalated to federal court Wednesday. The ITHA is alleging a purse account underpayment in 2021 from now-defunct Arlington and a breach of contract triggered by Arlington's refusal to hand over the money once it became known the property was scheduled to be sold and that no racing would occur there in 2022. Asked for comment via email late Wednesday afternoon, Arlington president Tony Petrillo...

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Judge Dismisses Baffert's Lawsuit Against NYRA

A federal judge on Friday dismissed Bob Baffert's lawsuit against the New York Racing Association (NYRA) that had alleged the Hall of Fame trainer was injured by NYRA's initial attempt to bar him back in May and again in September when it summoned him to a hearing to adjudicate his "detrimental" conduct related to repeated equine drug positives. Chief among the reasons that United States District Court (Eastern District of New York) Carol Bagley Amon dismissed the amended complaint were that some of Baffert's claims were not yet "ripe" for...

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PAHBPA Swats Back at Presque Isle in Counterclaim Over ADW 'Money Grab'

In an ongoing dispute over whether Presque Isle Downs (PID) has been steering on-track patrons to make bets through advance-deposit wager (ADW) platforms controlled by its corporate parent and then not counting those bets as on-track wagers that provide better revenue for purses, the Pennsylvania Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association (PAHBPA) swatted back in federal court with a Sept. 7 counterclaim to claw back at least $75,000 in disputed funds. PID had fired the first salvo of litigation on June 24 in the form of a civil lawsuit that sought...

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Baffert Seeks $162K in Legal Fees from NYRA

Even though trainer Bob Baffert has secured only a preliminary injunction in his ongoing lawsuit against the New York Racing Association (NYRA) that allows him to race at New York's three major tracks pending the final resolution of the case, his attorneys filed a motion in federal court Aug. 25 seeking $162,086 in legal fees and expenses from NYRA based on the claim that Baffert is due that money as the "prevailing party." The three attorneys Baffert engaged for work on this case have billed him at rates between $450...

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Horsemen File Federal Suit Against New Mexico Commission

Edited Press Release The New Mexico Horsemen's Association filed suit against the New Mexico Racing Commission in federal court late Monday, charging the regulatory body with depriving racehorse owners and trainers of their civil rights and other violations. The horsemen seek compensatory damages, legal fees and other relief the court deems appropriate. "The horsemen finally said, 'Hold it. How many constitutional laws can you continue to violate? How many statutes can you continue to ignore?'" said Gary Mitchell, attorney for the New Mexico Horsemen's Association (NMHA). "The horsemen said, 'Enough....

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Allegedly Doped 'Max' Now Both Target and Seeker of Judicial Vindication

Even as rival owners of horses that finished behind Maximum Security (New Year's Day) are threatening legal action to get the allegedly doped 3-year-old champ disqualified from previous wins, Gary and Mary West are forging ahead with their 10-month federal court odyssey to overturn the controversial GI Kentucky Derby stewards' in-race interference DQ that stripped their colt of the honor, prestige and prize money of America's most important horse race. "But for the stewards' nonfeasance and misfeasance, Maximum Security would have been declared the official winner, and Plaintiffs would have...

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