Published: Sat, February 02, 2019
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

Champion Australian horse trainer arrested after dawn raid

Champion Australian horse trainer arrested after dawn raid

Police say the allegations include obtaining financial advantage by deception, engaging in conduct that corrupts a betting outcome and use of corrupt conduct information for betting purposes as well as animal cruelty.

No charges have been laid by police as yet.

The Guardian reports that Weir, 48, one of Australia's most successful trainers, was reportedly among three men arrested and interviewed by police after the twin raids at properties in Miners Rest and Ballarat.

Victoria's champion trainer for the past five seasons, Weir, who operates stables at Ballarat and Warrnambool, has more than 600 horses on his books.

Police seized a number of items including what they believe to be an unregistered firearm, a small amount of cocaine and four tasers, also known as "jiggers".

"As the matters are the subject of ongoing investigations by Victoria police and Racing Victoria, we are not at liberty at this time to disclose the identities of the persons arrested nor the details of the investigations".

Weir is Australia's most prolific and successful trainer and trained the 2015 Melbourne Cup victor Prince of Penzance, ridden by Michelle Payne who became the first woman to win the coveted trophy.

Darren Weir with the 2017 Melbourne Cup and Caulfield Cup trophies.

"Our main aim is to ensure our owners are not disadvantaged by this process in any way, and accordingly it is business as usual in regards to training and care of your horses".

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"Thank you for your ongoing support, consideration and loyalty to Darren Weir Racing", Leonard added.

"The use and possession of electronic apparatus such as Tasers/jiggers is an offence. with a mandatory minimum penalty of two years disqualification for any use or attempt to use".

"Today's warrants show that Victoria Police will investigate allegations of corruption in sport and racing", Assistant Commissioner Neil Paterson told reporters.

"Racing Victoria's Integrity Services team has been conducting an investigation into the activities of licensed persons in the Warrnambool and Ballarat areas".

Racing Victoria alerted Victoria Police after launching investigations into parties past year.

Racing Victoria chief executive Giles Thompson admitted Wednesday's events were "not good for the image of racing".

Minister for Racing Martin Pakula said he was committed to maintaining the integrity of the sport and any allegations of breaches were extremely disappointing.

He refused to accept claims the investigation had "damaged the integrity" of racing in Victoria. I can't go into the specifics that give rise to the circumstances of each one of those charges because of the complexity of this investigation and because it still is ongoing. (9News) He is now the most successful trainer in the national trainer's premiership.

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