10/23/2012 10:51AM

New York Court of Appeals rejects Dutrow's appeal of suspension

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Barbara D. Livingston
The New York Court of Appeals has rejected trainer Richard Dutrow Jr.'s appeal of a 10-year suspension.

The New York Court of Appeals has rejected Richard Dutrow Jr.’s appeal of a 10-year suspension handed down by the New York State Racing and Wagering Board, but the trainer will continue to be allowed to enter horses until his options to appeal the case are exhausted.

The Court of Appeals said in a brief note Tuesday that it had rejected the appeal “upon the ground that no substantial constitutional question is directly involved.” The Court of Appeals is the highest court in New York, but Dutrow still has one last option to pursue the appeal in the same court by requesting that the court hear the case on a variety of legal grounds aside from an examination of constitutional principles in the case.

The ruling is a substantial blow to Dutrow’s efforts to overturn the 10-year suspension, which was handed down a year ago. Following the suspension, Dutrow was granted a stay that has allowed him to continue to train, and the stay will remain in effect until all of his legal options to appeal in New York’s courts run out.

“The court-ordered stay that allows him to continue to train is still in effect,” a spokesman for the racing and wagering board said Wednesday.

If the Court of Appeals declines to hear the appeal, it is likely that the stay will be lifted and Dutrow will have to pursue any remaining legal options while on the sidelines.

“We are, of course, disappointed, but neither deterred nor defeated,” Dutrow’s attorney, Michael Koenig, said Wednesday morning. “We will now seek the more traditional route of asking the Court of Appeals for permission to appeal this case. I continue to believe that Rick’s due-process rights were violated and that the factors we will now ask the Court to consider weigh in our favor.”

Koenig had argued in the latest appeal that the court should consider the constitutional standards for a conflict of interest. Earlier, Koenig had argued that the suspension should be thrown out because John Sabini, chairman of the racing and wagering board, had a conflict of interest in the case because he also was on the board of the Association of Racing Commissioners International at the time the suspension was handed down. The RCI had asked New York to examine Dutrow’s license earlier that year.

In July, the New York Appellate Division dismissed Dutrow’s appeal in a ruling that said that Sabini “was not bound to follow any suggestions made by the association or its president, and the record is devoid of evidence that he took any action based upon the communications.”

Dutrow is a leading trainer on the New York circuit, but his long history of violations has made him a lightning rod for critics of the sport’s regulatory system. He won the Kentucky Derby with Big Brown in 2008.

Vic More than 1 year ago
You the best rick keep wining
Gerald Sabo More than 1 year ago
So during this long legal battle he gets to continue training and is trying to show he plays by the rules thus influencing the court? Bull Pucky. If it was one violation I wouldn't have a problem with it but the guy has been known for years to be a needle trainer. Pay the piper Ricky.
russell More than 1 year ago
Don't know about Oscar being the only one Sue. The immortal Peter Ferriola and Juan Serey had a nice runs after Oscar. In fact when of Dutrow's client's is James Riccio who has had horses with Ferriola and Serey. And there is a difference between what Ernie Paragallo did. He deliberately starved dozens of horses at his farm. But Dutrow has cheated in this game repeatedly. For that he must do the time.
Suzanne Panneta More than 1 year ago
How ironic that New York, once a bastion against the use of Lasix and Bute, is now the last refuge for Dutrow.
Suzanne Panneta More than 1 year ago
Makes me nostalgic for the days of Oscar Barrera. I always thought his secret might be that he was one of the first to discover Clenbuterol. Whatever it was, he took the secret to his grave. http://articles.latimes.com/1991-04-11/sports/sp-221_1_oscar-barrera
Scott More than 1 year ago
Mr Jhangimal- I believe your argument was well intentioned but ill informed. To compare Mr. Dutrow in any way to Paragallo is ludicrous. On is being scrutinized for med violations while the other was banned from the sport for blatant cruelty. Mr. Dutrow stock is well kept and healthy. Any argument mentioning one person with the other is offensive to anyone who follows the sport. And no, a scapegoat is one who is guilty to a lesser extent of a violation and is being used to focus attention away from the larger issue (usually the deeper pockets). To compare those participating in this sport to terrorists or murderers is overly dramatic at best and absolutley idiotic at worst. Let me ask you - what is your specific issue with Mr. Dutrow?
Dennis Fisher More than 1 year ago
Richard Dutrow is merely being used as a horse racing genie pig many have cheated but Vested Interest is the name of the game blue blood breeders -owner's of horse racing
russell More than 1 year ago
At this point the cowardly owners should show some courage and give their horses to someone else. NY should just tell him we have no room on the backstretch so we can only give you 10 stalls. Isnt it ironic how Dutrow, NY leading trainer, has no BC entries. There is no way Santa Anita would allow him to race there.
GOODWIN More than 1 year ago
Thank God! Go sell insurance, you creep!
Pom De Terre More than 1 year ago
no track in the country will take him now, and all these horses will be far better off for it. YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!