Vic greyhound track manager cops life ban
A Victorian track manager banned from greyhound racing for life used live piglets and rabbits on leashes or tied to lures to train the dogs.
Tooradin Trial Track manager Stuart Mills is one of four trainers banned from the sport for life, while two former Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) officials are among several others charged with live-baiting offences.
Mr Mills clearly knew what he was doing, the independent Racing Appeals and Disciplinary Board said in handing down the life ban this week.
“His conduct involved active participation in multiple breaches of the rules carried out in what appeared to be a practised and experienced manner, and included the gravest of these types of offences,” it said.
Mr Mills, who did not contest the charges nor attend the RADB hearing, was found guilty of breaching racing rules by using live animals as a lure for greyhounds.
Small live piglets or live rabbits were put on a leash to excite the greyhounds or attached to lures, the judgment said.
Mr Mills’ father, 40-year veteran trainer Anthony Mills, and trainers Jon Roberts and Christopher Connolly have also been banned for life.
“The use of a live animal to excite and bait greyhounds is a barbaric, vile and abhorrent practice,” the RADB said.
It has also disqualified another two people for their involvement in live baiting at the Tooradin track.
Another seven trainers and handlers from the track have now been charged under greyhound racing rules after video footage earlier this year allegedly showed them involved in live baiting.
They include GRV’s former integrity and racing manager Robert Smith and former GRV steward Paul Anderton.
Their cases have yet to be heard by the board.
GRV chairman Bernie Carolan said live baiting was despicable.
“To be responsible for the operation of a track where this level of banned activity went on is not only disturbing, it shows a complete lack of regard for others within the industry,” Mr Carolan said in a statement on Thursday.
The Tooradin Trial Track has not operated since February because its registration was suspended after the live-baiting allegations emerged.