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Non Raceday Inquiry RIU v E Duganzich - Reserved Decision dated 2 April 2019 - Chair, Mr T Utikere

Created on 03 April 2019

BEFORE A JUDICIAL COMMITTEE OF THE

JUDICIAL CONTROL AUTHORITY

UNDER THE RACING ACT 2003

IN THE MATTER of the Rules of Greyhound Racing New Zealand

BETWEEN RACING INTEGRITY UNIT

Informant

AND E DUGANZICH

Respondent

Judicial Committee: Mr T Utikere (Chairman)

Mrs N Moffatt (Member)

Parties: Mr S Irving (for the RIU)

Mr E Duganzich (as the Respondent)

Hearing: 30 March 2019 at Manawatu Raceway

RESERVED DECISION OF JUDICIAL COMMITTEE DATED 2 APRIL 2019

FACTS

[1] The Respondent has been charged with three breaches of Rules 61.1 and 61.3 of the New Zealand Rules of Greyhound Racing.

[2] The relevant Rules are as follows:

Rule 61.1: The Owner, Trainer or Person in charge of a Greyhound Nominated to compete in a Race, shall produce the Greyhound for the Race free of any Prohibited Substance.

Rule 61.3: Without limiting any of the provisions of these Rules, the Owner and Trainer or person for the time being in charge of any Greyhound brought onto the Racecourse of any Club for the purposes of engaging in any Race which is found on testing, examination or analysis conducted pursuant to these Rules to have received a Prohibited Substance shall be severally guilty of an Offence.

[3] The specific Informations alleged:

Information No A7173
THAT on 26 October 2018 Earl Stephen Duganzich, licensed trainer and person in charge of the greyhound ‘Tuna Speed’ who ran in Race 8 at the Wanganui Greyhound Racing Club meeting at Hatrick Raceway, failed to present the greyhound free of the Category 1 Prohibited Substance, [D-Arg2] Dermorphin [1-4], being an offence under the provisions of Rules 61.1 and 61.3 and punishable pursuant to Rule 63.1 and 63.4 of the New Zealand Greyhound Racing Association Rules.

Information No A7174
THAT On 16 November 2018 Earl Stephen Duganzich, licensed trainer and person in charge of the greyhound ‘Tuna Speed’ who ran in Race 5 at the Wanganui Greyhound Racing Club meeting at Hatrick Raceway, failed to present the greyhound free of the Category 1 Prohibited Substance, [D-Arg2] Dermorphin [1-4], being an offence under the provisions of Rules 61.1 and 61.3 and punishable pursuant
to Rule 63.1 and 63.4 of the New Zealand Greyhound Racing Association Rules.

Information No A7175
THAT On 28 December 2018 Earl Stephen Duganzich, licensed trainer and person in charge of the greyhound ‘Spot On Hearty’ who ran in Race 7 at the Wanganui Greyhound Racing Club meeting at Hatrick Raceway, failed to present the greyhound free of the Category 1 Prohibited Substance, [D-Arg2] Dermorphin [1-4], being an offence under the provisions of Rules 61.1 and 61.3 and punishable pursuant
to Rule 63.1 and 63.4 of the New Zealand Greyhound Racing Association Rules.

[4] The relevant Penalty provisions are contained in Rules 63.1 and 63.4 which state:

Rule 63.1: “Any Person found guilty of an Offence under these Rules shall be liable to:

a. a fine not exceeding $10,000 for any one (1) Offence; and/or
b. Suspension; and/or
c. Disqualification; and/or
d. Warning Off.”

Rule 63.4: “Any Greyhound which competes in a Race and is found to be the recipient of a Prohibited Substance shall be Disqualified from that Race.”

PRELIMINARY MATTERS

[5] Following a teleconference held with both parties on 12 March, the Committee had issued a Minute dated 12 March which identified that the Committee was in receipt of the Notice of Appointment, the Charge Rules and Penalty Provisions and an Authority to Charge Letter from the General Manager of the Racing Integrity Unit (RIU), Mr M Godber. At that point we were also in receipt of an Agreed Summary of  Facts. This matter was set down for a hearing prior to racing at Manawatu Raceway on 29 March.

THE HEARING

[6] Mr Duganzich attended the hearing with the support of his father Mr Duganzich (Senior). The respondent understood that as Dermorphin fell within the definition of a Category 1 Prohibited Substance, that was what was referred to in the charges. He confirmed he admitted the charges on the proviso that it did not relate to administration of any kind.

AGREED SUMMARY OF FACTS

[7] The RIU submitted the following Agreed Summary of Facts:

The Respondent Earl Stephen Duganzich is 48 years old and is a licenced trainer under the Rules of New Zealand Greyhound Racing (GRNZ). He has been involved in the industry all his life. He trains 10 greyhounds from his kennels at Turakina, Wanganui where he lives with his partner and son, sharing the property with his parents who are both ex greyhound trainers.

The Respondent owns and trains 2yo bitch ‘Tuna Speed’.

1st Positive – Tuna Speed (#139453)
On 26 October 2018 ‘Tuna Speed’ finished second in Race 8, ‘The Rock 95.2FM C3’, at the Wanganui Greyhound Racing Club’s meeting at Hatrick Raceway. The greyhound was post-race swabbed (#139453). ‘Tuna Speed’ earned gross stake money of $772.

On 16 November ‘Tuna Speed’ was pre-race swabbed (#139476) before winning Race 5, ‘The Rock 95.2FM C2/C3’, at the Wanganui Greyhound Racing Club’s meeting at Hatrick Raceway. ‘Tuna Speed’ earned gross stake money of $1,848.

On 20 November the NZ Racing Laboratory Services issued a certificate of analysis detailing the first sample positive to [D-Arg2] Dermorphin [1-4]-OH.

[D-Arg2] Dermorphin [1-4]-OH (sequence Tyr-D-Arg-Phe-Gly-OH) is a tetrapeptide analogue of Dermorphin. Dermorphin is a naturally occurring substance in certain species only, including bacteria, amphibians and molluscs. It does not occur naturally in any known species of mammal. Its action in mammals is similar to morphine but is said to be 30-40 times more potent. [D-Arg2] Dermorphin [1-4]-OH is one of over 100 synthetic forms of the substance Dermorphin.

There is no licenced form of the drug for use in either humans or animals in New Zealand and there is no known veterinary therapeutic use for the drug in animals in New Zealand.

Dermorphin can be purchased via the Internet as a liquid or powder / salt with an approximate price of US$200 for 5mg.

As Dermorphin is an opioid analogue, it would normally fall into Category-1 of the GRNZ Prohibited Substances list, i.e. substances that have the ability to negatively impact the performance of a greyhound. However, it could be argued that it actually enhances performance and therefore should be considered a Category-4 substance, ie capable of improving or otherwise impacting the performance of a greyhound.

On 22 December the Respondent was interviewed at his property. He could offer no explanation as to the presence of Dermorphin in the dog and stated that he had never heard of the substance. The Respondent stated that ‘Tuna Speed’ was fed nothing different from his other greyhounds but had been treated with ‘Black Powder’ for a laceration and a homemade liniment.

A search of his kennels and feed room located a number of items that were taken as exhibits and sent for analysis – none of which were found to contain Dermorphin. A list of medications which the Respondent was taking was provided to the NZRLS who also confirmed none contained Dermorphin.

2nd Positive – Tuna Speed (#139476)
On 23 December the RIU were advised by the NZRLS that the second sample obtained from ‘Tuna Speed’ was likely positive to the same prohibited substance. As the dog was racing later that evening at WGRC, the Respondent was informed by telephone of the likely second positive but when given the option, elected to race ‘Tuna Speed’ as “I know I haven’t given it anything”. The dog was again swabbed after finishing 6th (the swab was subsequently negative to prohibited substances). On 28 November the NZRLS issued a certificate of analysis detailing the second sample positive to the same [D-Arg2] Dermorphin [1-4]-OH.

3rd Positive – Spot On Hearty (#131776)
The Respondent also owns and trains 2yo bitch ‘Spot On Hearty’. On 28 December ‘Spot On Hearty’ won Race 7, the Liquorland Wanganui C2, at the Wanganui Greyhound Racing Club’s meeting at Hatrick Raceway. The greyhound was post-race swabbed (#131776). ‘Spot On Hearty’ earned gross stake money of $925.

On 18 January the NZ Racing Laboratory Services issued a certificate of analysis detailing the sample positive to the same [D-Arg2] Demorphin [1-4]-OH.

On 19 January the Respondent was again interviewed at his property. Again he could offer no explanation for the positive as ‘Spot On Hearty’ was fed the same as the other race dogs and he had had several swabs since the first positive that were clear.

Further inquiries relating to two Greyhound Racing Victoria cases in Australia, positive to the same synthetic analogue of Dermorphin, could provide no further obvious sources of the substance.

The Respondent has been a licensed trainer for a number of years. He has no previous charges under GRNZ Rules.

[8] With reference to the homemade liniment referred to in the Summary, Mr Duganzich said it had an iodine base that was recommended by their vet. Mr Irving confirmed that product and ‘Black Powder’ had been analysed, with a clear result returned.

[9] The only food source that the respondent believed could have been different was the sardines and tomatoes that they fed their dogs. Mr Irving confirmed that the New Zealand and Australian Laboratories indicated that due to the origin of Dermorphin there was no evidence that the substance would naturally occur in sardines.

[10] Mr Duganzich (Snr) advised he had been in contact with Massey University and the Laboratory at Porirua to try and arrange evidence regarding the sardines, but nothing had eventuated. Mr Duganzich also confirmed that the application of ‘Black Powder’ and the liniment to TUNA SPEED was due to lameness as a result of a laceration it had sustained.

DECISION

[11] As the charges were admitted, the Committee deemed the charges proved.

RIU’S PENALTY SUBMISSIONS

[12] Mr Irving had very helpfully provided the following Submissions in advance of the hearing:

The respondent Earl Stephen Duganzich is a licenced trainer under the New Zealand Rules of Greyhound Racing (GRNZ). He is 48 years old and has been involved in the greyhound racing industry all his life, his parents Andrew and Beverley Duganzich were also greyhound trainers.

Mr Duganzich has admitted three breaches of Rule 61.1 and 61.3. The circumstances are detailed in the attached Summary of Facts which have been agreed. The penalties which may be imposed are detailed in the attached Charge Rule and Penalty Provisions Document.

PENALTY SUBMISSIONS

The charges to which Mr Duganzich has admitted are offences of ‘absolute liability’. They do not require that there be proof that the person concerned has acted deliberately in breach of the rules. The reasoning behind the imposition of offences of ‘absolute liability’ is to ensure that however a breach may occur the person or persons responsible are held to account. As to the level of culpability that is the opinion of the Committee reflected in the penalty that might be imposed.

Dermorphin is not listed specifically in the GRNZ ‘Examples of Categories of Prohibited Substances’ and there is some conjecture as to whether ‘Dermorphin’ should be included as a Category 1 or Category 4 substance as reported by GRNZ Chief Veterinary Advisor Dr Malcolm Jansen: As dermorphin is an opioid analogue, it would normally fall into Category-1 of the Prohibited Substances list, ie substances that have the ability to negatively impact the performance of a greyhound. However, it could be argued that it actually enhances performance and therefore should be considered a Category-4 substance, ie capable of improving or otherwise impacting the performance of a greyhound. (refer Appendix A)

The New Zealand Racing Laboratory Services (NZRLS) Official Racing Analyst Dr Robert Howitt’s opinion is that Dermorphins act on opiate receptors and opiates and opioids are Category 1 (essentially “stoppers”) however this is not absolute - for example Heroin is listed under Category 2 but is also an opiate. Dr Howitt advised that the purpose of giving Dermorphin is to block pain from a specific area, not to slow a dog down. He did not believe that given the circumstances of this case the ‘Categories of Prohibited Substances’ were particularly useful and from a scientific point of view didn’t make sense. He commented that in his opinion Dermorphin should not be included in Category 1 and therefore the only alternative is Category 4.

Under Australia’s Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) Penalty Guidelines 2019 Dermorphin is listed as a Permanently Banned Prohibited Substance and falls into Category 4 (of 4) – with the minimum penalty being a 2 year disqualification. In New Zealand, Dermorphin is not categorised as a Permanently Banned Prohibited Substance.

In his summary Dr David Palmer, NZRLS biochemist and expert on peptide and protein analysis, states: The peptide dermorphin was identified in the 1980s as an analgesic that is substantially more potent than morphine. Over 100 analogues of dermorphin have been synthesised in the pursuit of improved analgesic properties and increased bioavailability. Dermorphin and its analogues pose a threat to the greyhound and horse racing industries as performance-enhancing/effecting doping agents which would be administered by injection.

Apart from their potential analgesic effects, these substances may act as stimulants and they may increase the production of growth hormone. The potential for dermorphin and its analogues to be used as sport doping agents is significant: The use of dermorphin, aka “frog juice”, is well known in the racing industry following a high profile racehorse doping scandal in the USA in 2012. The properties and use of these substances are well described in the scientific literature, some of which is freely available on the internet. Dermorphin and some of its analogues are readily available from many on-line stores and they are inexpensive. Importing these substances into New Zealand is unregulated and legal; they are not human or veterinary pharmaceuticals and they are not covered by the Misuse of Drugs Act.

The GRNZ recommended Starting Point for a Category 1 offence is a 10 year Disqualification and for a Category 4 offence is a 6 month Disqualification and / or $5000 fine. Based on the available expert opinions, the RIU submits that Dermorphin could arguably be categorised in either Category 1 or 4 which makes it problematic when determining penalty.

The RIU therefore submits that an appropriate penalty for these three breaches combined is either a $10,000 fine (Category 4 - $5000 for the first breach and $2500 for each subsequent breach) or a six month disqualification (Category 1).

PRECEDENT

There has been one GRNZ case involving a Category 1 Prohibited Substance since the inception of the new penalty system guidelines on 01 September 2014: RIU v GA Lawrence (02.03.2015) - 3x Morphine positives from an (initially) unidentified source. In this case the RIU sought a monetary penalty of $3000 per charge with the JCA imposing a $4000 fine and the three Greyhounds disqualified. This decision was appealed by the RIU (to have the charges quashed) following the subsequent identification of the source of the morphine being from manufacturer contaminated kibble. The fine was reduced to $2000.

The following GRNZ cases (pre penalty increase and Category guidelines) also involve Category 1 positives: RIU v Allen (28.08.2014) – Morphine, one greyhound, poppy seeds from bread, $2000 fine, RIU v Roberts (15.11.2012) – Morphine, one greyhound, poppy seeds from bread, $2000 fine, NZGRA v McInerney (01.09.2010) – Codeine, one greyhound, source not identified, $1500 fine.

Penalty decisions for ‘Category 1’ substances in the other two codes include: RIU v Browne (01.09.2017) – Sotalol, NZTR, no clear explanation, $4000 fine, RIU v Bell & Donoghue (21.03.2015) – Diazepam, NZTR, source not identified, $6000 fine, RIU v Chilcott (04.12.2013) – Tramadol, NZHR, possible human contamination, $3300 fine.

GRNZ Category 4 positives post the new guidelines have been predominantly for Caffeine and fines have ranged from $2000 (RIU v Briggs 24.12.2018) - $3500 (RIU v Bennett 01.07.2016) for a single charge.

There have been three documented Dermorphin cases under GRV jurisdiction – prior to the 2019 updated Penalty Guidelines: G Joske 16.12.2015 – Administration, 2 year disqualification; L Floyd 11.02.2019 – Presentation, 1 year disqualification; G Burke 14.02.2019 – Presentation, 6 months disqualification. Inquiries made with the GRV Stewards revealed that of their three cases they also had no evidence as to the source of the positives and all three trainers had vehemently denied administering or having any access to Dermorphin.

The only identifiable common ‘trans-Tasman’ denominator was that all (four) trainers fed sardines to their race-dogs. However, both racing laboratories advised that there was no evidence that the Dermorphin peptide detected in the greyhounds was found in nature and therefore had to be synthetically produced – “a D-form Amino Acid which you would never expect to find in nature.”

FURTHER

In response to an article on the possible source of the Dermorphin submitted in the recent GRV cases (refer Appendix B) Dr Palmer stated: The document is a work of fiction that appears to be plagiarised from an autism support network website. A meaningful document on this topic would be characterised by having an author and in-text references to publications in international peer-reviewed scientific journals for every factual statement. The fiction is hinged on the work of A. Friedman, who is purported to have found dermorphin in autistic children. This key information is not supported by literature references, and the observation appears to be unpublished. In other words, there is no evidence that autistic children produce dermorphin. Irrespective of the validity of speculations in the document, it has no relevance to the three cases of [D-Arg2]- dermorphin [1-4]-OH found in greyhounds in New Zealand. Dermorphin and [D-Arg2]- dermorphin [1-4]-OH are distinct peptides.

As in RIU v L, there is no evidence to indicate that the drug was administered to either enhance or halt performance. In that case the Committee were “fully satisfied that there was no intent by Mr Lawrence to gain an unfair advantage by feeding a prohibited substance to his Greyhounds”.

Mr Duganzich runs a very tidy training establishment and on the two occasions investigators searched the property there was also no evidence of Dermorphin being associated with or used by him or his co-habitants. The fact that, when advised of ‘Tuna Speed’s second positive hours before it was about to race again, Mr Duganzich opted to start the dog (knowing it would be tested) stating “I know I haven’t given it anything”, indicates no guilty knowledge. To have a third positive from a different dog six weeks after the second positive again suggests either that there was no intention, or an incredible lack of judgement.

Analysis of TAB betting records revealed no unusual bets associated with the greyhounds, the Respondent, his parents (ex- greyhound trainers who also reside at the property) or the relevant races.

Under Rule 61.4 the greyhounds are required to be disqualified from the three races.

COSTS

The RIU are seeking no costs.

MITIGATING FACTORS

It is acknowledged that Mr Duganzich and his parents have been fully co-operative with the investigation and Mr Duganzich has admitted the breaches at the earliest opportunity. Mr Duganzich is the owner of both greyhounds and his loss of stake earnings from the three disqualifications is $3545. Mr Duganzich has no previous prohibited substance breaches or any other serious rule breaches in his 28 years of holding a trainers licence.

AGGRAVATING FACTORS

Current scientific evidence details that the analogue of Dermorphin identified in the three dogs is synthetic and therefore could not have been replicated in nature or caused by environmental contaminants. Scientists also believe that the likely and most effective method of Dermorphin delivery would be by injection.

CONCLUSION

Based on previous cases, the mitigating and aggravating factors as listed and the overall circumstances considered in this case, the RIU submits that either a $10,000 fine (Category 4) or a six month disqualification (Category 1) is appropriate.

[13] Mr Irving reiterated that Category 1 substances were known as ‘stoppers’, and that if this was the case, the intention would be to ensure a dog did not perform well, for the purposes of a betting ring for example. As there was no evidence of this, Mr Irving said this was the basis for suggesting that it not be treated as a Category 1 breach.

[14] In support of this stance, the New Zealand Racing Laboratory’s Analyst Dr Palmer, had opined that the Category system was not very scientific; and in his opinion Dermorphin should not fall within Category 1, and that the only alternative therefore was Category 4. In Australia it was a permanently banned substance, which was the equivalent of being defined as a Category 2 substance in New Zealand.

[15] Despite this expert opinion, Mr Irving acknowledged that Category 1 listed opioids by definition, which Dermorphin was. His rationale for suggesting it be treated as a Category 4 breach was because the former was the best fit at that time. His investigation had determined that the substance could be purchased on the internet, and that it was not relatively inexpensive, costing $920NZD for 25mg of Dermorphin salt.

[16] He identified that the starting points did not differentiate between administration and presentation and that the previous case of RIU v Lawrence did not consider nor apply the starting point identified for a Category 1 breach; instead the Committee, in the face of a RIU penalty submission of a $9,000 fine ($3,000 on each of the three charges), imposed a total fine of $4,000.

[17] A previous case of RIU v Harland (2013), which related to the use of a cough mixture containing Pholcodine, also a Category 1 Prohibited Substance, resulted in a four months disqualification. This was in lieu of an inability for the trainer to pay a $10,000 fine.

[18] Mr Irving submitted that the RIU were not seeking any costs.

RESPONDENT’S PENALTY SUBMISSIONS

[19] Mr Duganzich said that he was only guilty of presenting the dogs to race with the Dermorphin in their system, but he had no idea how that came to be the case. He submitted a $3,000 fine as appropriate and affordable for him. He said he had to pay the prize money back, and that he ran a small kennel, with only a few dogs running each week.

[20] He submitted that a period of disqualification was not appropriate, and believed there were similarities with the Lawrence case where the RIU sought a $9,000 fine, but the penalty was a total $4,000 fine. Mr Irving confirmed that on appeal that was reduced to a $2,000 fine as at the time of the penalty hearing, the source of contamination was unknown; but that the source was later identified, hence the reduction in fine.

[21] Mr Duganzich identified that he had taken steps since the positives, such as investing in security cameras at the premises, and locked kennels as his property was only 50 metres from the main road. He said he was a sickness beneficiary and that the greyhounds supplemented his income.

[22] He said he knew nothing about Dermorphin and that there was ‘no rhyme nor reason’ for using it. His dogs had also been swabbed since, and there was no issue with the results. When his dogs raced, it happened that they would get swabbed more than 90 percent of the time, and that there were never any issues with the results. Secondly, he suggested it would be pointless for him to race a dog with a prohibited substance if he knew the chances of it being swabbed were so high. His dogs had also been subject to random hair testing on raceday, and they had also returned clear results.

[23] In closing, Mr Irving identified that Lawrence had been given credit for his 15 years in the industry, whereas Mr Duganzich had been involved for some 28 years, and that he had caused no issues during that time. He also submitted that the respondent had shown genuine remorse and that his culpability could be assessed as low-range. There was no intent, nor was there any evidence as to how the substance had been introduced. In such circumstances he believed Mr Duganzich’s degree of negligence was within the low range.

REASONS FOR PENALTY

[24] Dermorphin is a substance that has no judicial racing history in New Zealand, but does in greyhound racing in Victoria. When we review that history, the Australian jurisdiction offers little assistance as the categorisation of the substance is not equitable to the classification approach taken in New Zealand.

[25] The RIU have helpfully referred us to a number of previous cases that involved prohibited substances. Unfortunately, most are similar to Harland in pre-dating the change to the Penalty Guide starting points. However, they are helpful in providing some guidance around Committees’ approaches to penalties that transverse the classification bands.

[26] Lawrence is the only code-specific Category 1 comparison in New Zealand. Like the Committee in that case, we are also satisfied that there is no intent on the part of the respondent to gain an unfair advantage. In fact, exactly how the Dermorphin came to be detected in Mr Duganzich’s two dogs over a period, for the purposes of the testing, of some two months, is rather peculiar.

[27] The various feed and treatment items used in their regime has been tested and dismissed by the RIU as the source of contamination. Whether it was administered via some mistake at the property or by an external agent cannot be established. We accept that Mr Duganzich legitimately does not know how the positives came about; however, as this is a matter of strict liability, a penalty must follow.

[28] In approaching the issue of penalty, the Committee believes that we must approach this as a Category 1 Prohibited Substance breach as Dermorphin by its chemical definition is specifically identified as such. However, when assessing an appropriate penalty, we accept that in the current circumstances, the 10 year Disqualification starting point for this breach is disproportionate in the face of expert evidence that suggests that the substance may actually enhance or improve a greyhound’s performance.

[29] This scientific analysis has been confirmed by at least two experts, namely GRNZ’s Chief Veterinary Advisor Dr Jansen and New Zealand Racing Laboratory Services Biochemist Dr Palmer. We have had regard to the evidence they have provided for the Committee when considering how best to classify Dermorphin for the purposes of assessing penalty in this case. It is not within our purview to amend the definitions identified within the Categorisation system; that is a matter for GRNZ, in consultation with the relevant stakeholders.

[30] Therefore, we consider it more appropriate to look to the starting point identified for a substance that potentially enhances the performance of a greyhound; namely a six months Disqualification and/or a $5,000 fine. We consider a monetary penalty as appropriate and adopt a $5,000 fine as our starting position.

[31] In mitigation we apply Mr Duganzich’s early admission of the breach and his co-operation with the investigative process. We also accept that he displays genuine remorse and we assess his degree of negligence and his culpability to both sit within the low-range.

[32] It is also apparent that Mr Duganzich has taken steps to mitigate any future breaches in light of these recent events. He has installed security cameras at his premises and has also upgraded the gates as part of that suite of work.

[33] His record is excellent and we must apply credit for his 28 year blemish-free involvement in the industry, which supersedes that identified in Lawrence.

[34] There is no loss to connections, as the respondent owns the dogs. While he has cited the requirement to pay stake monies back, that is not a mitigating factor, but rather what is required in such a situation. There were also no irregularities in the analysis of betting for any of the three races within which the dogs raced. We do not identify any aggravating features of the breaches.

[35] While there are three breaches, we do not consider it appropriate given the circumstances outlined above, to impose individual quantums on each of the charges. Instead, a global fine to sanction all three breaches is how we intend to address penalty.

[36] Lawrence has been of benefit to us, as that decision related to similar circumstances to the current offending. Two dogs over three races returned a positive for a Category 1 Prohibited Substance. While the source of the positives was not known at the time of the penalty hearing in that case, the end result was a $4000 fine and a $300 costs award in favour of the JCA. We consider it appropriate, given the specific parallels with Lawrence, to impose a similar penalty in relation to Mr Duganzich’s offending.

[37] In determining penalty, the well-defined principles of sentencing require us to consider the specific circumstances of the respondent. Having been privy to all the information placed before this Committee, we determine that a $4,000 fine will act as an appropriate sanction for this offending, while at the same time meet the general principles of deterrence and proportionality.

PENALTY

[38] Mr Duganzich is fined $4,000.

ORDERS

[39] The provision of Rule 63.4 directs the requirement for the greyhounds to be disqualified from their respective races.

[40] The following orders are made:

A. That TUNA SPEED is disqualified from Race 8 (The Rock 95.2FM C3) of the Wanganui Greyhound Racing Club’s Meeting on 26 October 2018. Any financial benefits paid, or to be paid, as a result of TUNA SPEED’s placing in that race are to be refunded for redistribution in accordance with the amended placings.

B. That TUNA SPEED is disqualified from Race 5 (The Rock 95.2FM C2/3) of the Wanganui Greyhound Racing Club’s Meeting on 16 November 2018. Any financial benefits paid, or to be paid, as a result of TUNA SPEED’s placing in that race are to be refunded for redistribution in accordance with the amended placings.

C. That SPOT ON HEARTY is disqualified from Race 7 (The Liquorland Wanganui C2) of the Wanganui Greyhound Racing Club’s Meeting on 28 December 2018. Any financial benefits paid, or to be paid, as a result of SPOT ON HEARTY’s placing in that race are to be refunded for redistribution in accordance with the amended placings.

COSTS

[41] The RIU do not seek any costs. While some costs have been borne by the JCA, the Committee declines to exercise its discretion to make such an order.

Signed at Palmerston North this 2nd day of April 2019.

Mr Tangi Utikere

Chairman

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