07/26/2001 12:00AM

Two indicted in Ellis fraud case


A federal grand jury in western Kentucky has indicted two Texas brothers on felony charges relating to their roles in a betting coup in 1996 at Ellis Park.

The indictment, announced this week by the Thoroughbred Racing Protective Bureau through the Thoroughbred Racing Associations, charges Ronnie Ray Allen and Ernest E. Allen with fraud, conspiracy, and racketeering. The Allens were arraigned Thursday, with the trial set for Oct. 3 in Owensboro, Ky.

The charges stem from July 31, 1996, at Ellis, where the horses Loud Yac and Harrisburg raced falsely under the name of owner-trainer Walter A. Johnson, when in fact they were owned by the Allen brothers. A copy of the six-page indictment, which was handed down July 11, said Ronnie Ray Allen won about $30,000 after Loud Yac won the 11th race that day. Harrisburg won the second race that day.

Last September, Johnson pleaded guilty to one count of interstate transportation of a forged security with intent to defraud. The charge relates to illegal activity involving foal papers.

Paul Berube, president of the TRPB, said Thursday that the Allen brothers had "been known to us for a long time. It was hardly the first time they'd done something like this."