Footballer Chopra Charged with Horse Race Tampering

Published Thursday, October 04, 2012 -

Horse racing is finding it has a difficult time maintaining costs related to the sport of kings and when a story of race fixing comes along it makes things that much worse. Wagering at the track or online it is matter of trust that the one has in the industry from the jockeys and trainers to the stable hands and owners.

Recently the Wales Online news source published a scathing indictment against former Cardiff city striker Michael Chopra who was charged with horse race fixing. The British Horseracing Authority alleges that Chopra offered bribes to jockey Andrew Heffernan.

After an investigation into wagering activity deemed suspicious Chopra was also charged with 'conspiring to commit a corrupt or fraudulent practice' . The investigations concentrated on nine races between November 1 2010 and March 31, 2011. Nottingham Forest midfielder James Coppinger, 31, and former Manchester United and England Under 21 international Mark Wilson, 33, have been implicated with Chopra in the conspiracy to bet on a fixed race.

The footballer does have a history of problem gambling which he sought help for. The BHA alleges that Chopra backed three horses to lose, or asked others to do so on his behalf, using information provided by the jockey Heffernan. The horses were Wanchai Whisperer (January 28 2011 at Lingfield); Gallantry (February 2 2011 at Kempton) and Silver Guest (February 9 2011, also at Lingfield). Heffernan, 24, who rode as an apprentice for Mick Channon and Mark Johnston, moved to Australia where he is licensed to race earlier this year.

Chopra has admitted to a long-standing gambling addiction and has claimed to have lost more than £1m as a result. The betting on games and sports that have been tampered with is a criminal act that destroys the trust that is so much part of the wagering industry.

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