Brandon L. Kulp became the fourth trainer based at Penn National in Grantville, Pa., to be charged in recent weeks by the Dauphin County district attorney with rigging a publicly exhibited contest in Pennsylvania – a first-degree misdemeanor.
Based on comments by Dauphin County Detective William B. Jackson in an affidavit, reported in the Harrisburg Patriot-News, more arrests may follow because the Penn National investigation initiated by the FBI has “implicated hundreds of horse owners and trainers.”
Kulp, 34, was charged on Wednesday, Oct. 17.
Authorities are relying on information from veterinarians who are cooperating in the investigation after pleading guilty in 2015 in federal court to illegally administering therapeutic drugs within 24 hours of a race. In Pennsylvania, as in most states, the only medication that may be legally administered within 24 hours of a race is the anti-bleeding drug furosemide.
In previous guilty pleas and in the federal trial of trainer Murray Rojas, veterinarians and several trainers admitted that a variety of substances were administered illegally on race day and that dates on veterinary records and invoices were falsified to cover up the illegal activity. Rojas was found guilty of misbranding medication and is awaiting sentencing. She was found not guilty of wire fraud.
In the last six weeks, trainers George R. “Rusty” Albright, John D. Conner and Bruce Kravets have also been charged with rigging a publicly exhibited contest. As with those trainers, authorities cited violations from October 2013 in the charge against Kulp. The court docket lists 17 charges dated Oct. 17, 2013.
Currently seventh in the trainer standings at Penn National, Kulp, 34, has been training since 2006. He has 427 career wins from 2,056 starts for earnings of nearly $7 million.
Kulp has a preliminary hearing scheduled on Nov. 29.
To date, the Pennsylvania State Horse Racing Commission has taken no regulatory action against Albright, Conner, Kravetz or Kulp relative to the allegations against them.
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