Here’s a question, can a person who served four years of a nine-year sentence for masterminding a major drugs ring, which imported cannabis with a street value of £10m into north-west England be trusted? It’s a matter of personal opinion and whether you think the justice system actually rehabilitates people, and if this was California viewpoints may also vary, but in this case the answer is hell no!
After Stephane Hassiakos “a non-nominated partner” in the filly Rascal In The Mix, was banned for six months for laying that horse on Betfair before a race at Southwell in November 2008, the UK is considering tightening the process by which owners are vetted. As it stands, only two members of a syndicate are actually required to register as owners with the British Horseracing Authority, but other can register as non nominated partners and fore-go the scrutinizing process by the British Horseracing Authority to test if the person is a “fit and proper person” for ownership listing. Thus the loophole that Stephane Hassiakos leaped through.
As described in the disciplinary hearing regarding Hassiakos case, she placed two lay bets, risking a total of £513.79, before Rascal In The Mix made her debut at a starting price of 14-1. Hassiakos stood to make £151.52 if she was beaten, naturally the horse was never in contention and it was easy money for Hassiakos.
Hassiakos walked away with the money claiming the he didn’t know it was against the rules to lay a horse in which he had share, whether he’s being truthful or not is besides the point. The point is a revision of the process is long overdue to prevent unscrupulous characters from this type of activity which does nothing but detract from the reputation and integrity of the sport.