France: 3 charged in European horse doping investigation

PARIS (AP) — French authorities have handed preliminary charges to three people suspected of roles in a horseracing doping ring, prosecutors said Thursday.

The suspects are accused of horse doping, organized fraud or illegal veterinary practice, the Bordeaux prosecutor’s office said in a statement. The three were released under judicial supervision but banned from race tracks, according to the statement.

Five other people detained in the investigation are facing charges in the coming days, the prosecutor’s office said.

The suspects were among 26 people – including racehorse trainers, veterinarians and pharmacists — arrested Tuesday during a police operation in France, Italy and Spain.

The case was opened in 2020 after a delivery of suspected doping products was reported at a stable in La Teste in southwest France, the prosecutor’s office said. Subsequent investigation, coordinated by European justice agency Eurojust, uncovered multiple networks involved in importing and distributing products used to boost horse performance.

French horse racing authorities Le Trot and France Galop said they were following the investigations and would assist investigators.

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