Darren Weir hit by 10 new charges
Fallen champion trainer Darren Weir has been hit by 10 new charges by Racing Victoria stewards, throwing an attempted comeback into disarray.
Weir now faces another lengthy ban from racing following Thursday’s charges, which relate to allegations of corruption, dishonesty and misleading behaviour and the care and welfare of horses.
It follows a new investigation, which has taken stewards some seven months, with statements taken from a significant number of people.
Weir received a four-year ban for possession of electric shock devices by racing stewards in 2019. At that stage he had won 36 Group 1s, claimed a Melbourne Cup and had collected more than $150m in prizemoney for his connections.
Weir later pleaded guilty to three animal cruelty charges in Warrnambool Magistrates Court, but avoided a conviction.
His return to the sport has been a hotly debated topic.
Key evidence in his criminal proceedings included video evidence of Weir, his former stable manager Jarrod McLean and ex-stablehand Tyson Kermond using an electronic device on three horses.
It is understood this new evidence played a key part in the new charges announced on Thursday, as his previous ban was just for the possession of the electronic device.
The charges relate to allegations of the use of an electrical device on gallopers Red Cardinal, Tosen Basil and Yogi.
Charges 1-3 for Weir fall under corruption, dishonesty and misleading behaviour.
“On or about 30 October 2018, on each horse Mr Weir used an electric or electronic apparatus capable of affecting their performance in a race (the Apparatus),” the stewards report said.
“Mr Weir applied the Apparatus to Red Cardinal, Tosen Basil and Yogi with the intention of affecting their performance, and thereby affecting their results in future races.”
Charges 4-9 related to the care and welfare of horses.
Charge 10 is another related to corruption, dishonesty and misleading behaviour.
“On or about 30 October 2018, Mr Weir applied the Apparatus to each of the Horses on numerous occasions. In doing so, Mr Weir engaged in action that was improper or dishonorable in connection with racing,” the statement read.
McLean and Kermond were also charged by RV stewards on Thursday and will face 10 separate charges.
They fall under charge AR 227(b), which reads: Stewards may penalize any person who attempts to commit, aids, abets, counsels, procures, connives at, approaches or requests another person to commit, conspires with another person to commit, or is a party to another person who commits, a breach of the Rules.
Weir has been involved with pre-training of horses. He would also face a ‘’character test’’ if he did again apply to be relicensed.