11/11/2002 12:00AM

Surrender the first step to indictment


NEW YORK - The three suspects in the Breeders' Cup pick six investigation were expected to hear the broad outlines of the case against them when they surrendered on Tuesday morning to the United States attorney for the Southern District of New York.

Expected to surrender at the U.S. attorney's office in White Plains, N.Y., were Derrick Davis, 29, of Baltimore, Chris Harn, 29, of Newark, Del., and Glen DaSilva, 29, of Manhattan, lawyers for the suspects said on Monday. Later in the day, the three were expected to appear before a district court judge to hear the government's criminal complaint, which will present the preliminary findings of the investigation.

No one has been charged so far, and lawyers for the three suspects continued to say on Monday that their clients would be cleared of wrongdoing. Law-enforcement officials said that the U.S. attorney, James B. Comey, will likely pursue a variety of fraud and conspiracy charges against the three.

According to legal experts and people involved in the investigation, the complaint filed by the U.S. attorney's office will outline the evidence collected so far and detail the criminal charges that the suspects may face. At the hearing, the judge will set bond.

From the time of the surrender, the government will have 30 days to issue an indictment that includes specific charges against the suspects. If an indictment is filed, a formal arraignment would then follow in approximately 30 days, when the suspects would enter pleas.

"This is the first physical, public step," said one legal source, referring to the surrender. "This is where you see a schedule getting established."

The New York Racing and Wagering Board launched the investigation into the pick six bet on Oct. 27. Last Friday, the board said that it had turned over the results of its inquiry to Comey's office and that the F.B.I. would begin assisting in the case.

"It's my client's position that he did nothing wrong," said Steve Allen, the attorney for Davis. "We are confident that after all the evidence is made public, my client will be found innocent of any wrongdoing or any improper conduct." Allen declined to comment further.

Daniel Conti, the attorney for Harn, said on Monday that his client would surrender on Tuesday. Conti said he was looking forward to seeing the complaint.

"We really don't know what charges we will face at this point," Conti said. "We'll find out tomorrow."

Rae Koshetz, an associate of Ed Hayes, the attorney for DaSilva, said on Monday that she would have no comment about specifics of the case.

"Our position is that it is the burden of the prosecution to prove that a crime has been committed," Koshetz said.

Investigators suspect that Harn, a former employee of Autotote who was fired on Oct. 31 after an internal investigation by the company, altered pick six and pick four bets placed by DaSilva and Davis through telephone-betting accounts at Catskill Off-Track Betting Corporation in New York. Autotote processes wagers for Catskill and at a majority of the country's wagering sites.

Harn, Davis, and DaSilva were fraternity brothers while attending Drexel University in Philadelphia in the early 1990's.

Davis, who owns a computer business in Baltimore, placed the winning Breeders' Cup pick six wager that has been the target of investigators since the day after the Breeders' Cup was held on Oct. 26 at Arlington Park outside Chicago. Davis's pick six ticket, which cost $1,152, had all six winning $2 bets and 108 consolation tickets. The total payout on the wager, which has been withheld, was nearly $3.1 million.

DaSilva, who majored in business administration at Drexel, placed winning bets on the pick six at Belmont Park on Oct. 5 that paid $115,408. Two days earlier, he won a pick four bet at Balmoral Park, a harness track in Illinois, that paid $1,851.20. Both tickets had a similar structure to Davis's Breeders' Cup bet, which used only one horse in each of the first four races and all horses in the final two races, investigators have said.