Frog Juice

With Suspension Behind Him, Heath Taylor Resumes Career With Gratitude, Patience

It’s been a long and arduous seven years, but on Monday, Jan. 28, trainer Heath Taylor, was restored to good standing by the Louisiana State Racing Commission. His ordeal began in May 2012, when Taylor was cited for a drug violation at Delta Downs.  The drug, Dermorphin, also known as frog juice because it originally […]

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Veterinarian Hebert, Kohll’s Pharmacy Guilty In Dermorphin Criminal Case

Acting U.S. Attorney Alexander C. Van Hook announced today that a federal jury found a Lake Charles veterinarian and a Nebraska pharmacy guilty of conspiring to sell an unapproved opioid drug 40 times more powerful than morphine for the purpose of improving the performance of race horses. Kyle James Hebert, 42, of Lake Charles, La., […]

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Judge Denies Motion To Dismiss Criminal Charges In Dermorphin Case

U.S. District Court Judge Donald Walter denied a motion earlier this month to dismiss federal charges against Louisiana veterinarian Dr. Kyle J. Hebert and Essential Pharmacy Compounding. Hebert is accused of providing trainers with injectable vials of dermorphin, a synthetic opioid said to be 30 times more powerful than morphine and which he allegedly obtained […]

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Rhea P. Loney Appointed Chair of RCI’s Regulatory Attorneys Committee

Rhea P. Loney, who led the successful “frog juice” prosecution of Quarter Horse trainers in Louisiana, has been appointed chair of the Association of Racing Commissioners International’s regulatory attorneys committee, ARCI chair Judy Wagner announced. Loney is a state assistant attorney general who has been a member of the regulatory attorneys committee since she began […]

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Louisiana Supreme Court Denies Taylor, 3 Other Trainers Suspended for Dermorphin

Four Quarter Horse trainers suspended between five and 10 years for dermorphin positives in horses racing in Louisiana reached the end of the road in their appeals process last week when the Louisiana Supreme Court on Friday denied their applications for writ to argue their case. They previously lost an appeal before Louisiana’s Third Circuit […]

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Two And A Half Years Later, Still No Action Against Vets In Louisiana Dermorphin Cases

“I should have been a vet.” That’s what Louisiana trainer Anthony Agilar said in 2012 when he received a three-year suspension from the Louisiana State Racing Commission after two of his horses tested positive for the powerful painkiller dermorphin (a.k.a. frog juice). Agilar and two other trainers receiving harsh suspensions for dermorphin, Lamont Keith Charles […]

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Louisiana Appeals Court Upholds 2012 Dermorphin Penalties

Louisiana’s Third Circuit Court of Appeal affirmed a lower court ruling upholding the 2012 fines and suspensions given four Quarter horse trainers with positive tests for the powerful painkiller dermorphin, a Class 1 drug said to be 40 times more powerful than morphine. The trainers – John Darrel Soileau, Alonzo Loya, Alvin Smith and Michael […]

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Ruidoso: All American Futurity the Last Straw for a Crackdown?

What was the tipping point for R.D. Hubbard? The chairman of Ruidoso Downs racetrack in New Mexico – also a well-known player in the Thoroughbred industry – on Tuesday announced tough, new rules to crack down on cheaters, saying he will “not stand idly by and watch anyone attempt to ruin the sport.” Was it […]

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Chasing the Frog: Keeping Up With Slippery Cheaters

Illegal drugs in racing are certainly nothing new. Horsemen were brewing up miracle potions to get an edge as far back as the days of chariot racing, and over time the drugs of choice developed in pace with human pharmacology. For trainers who are inclined to cheat by using banned substances, the drugs in their […]

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