CON and Tony Karakatsanis will know as early as next Tuesday the consequences of the Racing Appeals & Disciplinary Board decision today to find them guilty of all five charges relating to an attempt to stomach tube Howmuchdoyouloveme before the Yellowglen Stakes at Flemington last November.
The RAD Board will hear submissions on penalty on Tuesday or Wednesday next week.
Earlier this afternoon the RAD Board announced that all five charges brought by Racing Victoria stewards against Con and Tony Karakatsanis had been proved.
RAD Board chairman Judge Russell Lewis said the “oral and documentary evidence” of Con and Tony should not be accepted.
“The Board finds both men to be unreliable witnesses,” Judge Lewis said.
Judge Lewis described the case as a “circumstantial” one where the credibility of witness was pivotal to the finding.
He said there were two critical issues – did Tony Karakatsanis deliberately take a bag to the box of Howmuchdoyouloveme knowing it contained stomach tubing equipment and when Con Karakatsanis was at the front gate was he in the process of locking the gate.
Judge Lewis said the Board found that Tony Karakatsanis was familiar with the bag that contained equipment capable of stomach tubing a horse as he was “quite familiar” of its whereabouts in the feed room of Steve Richards’ stable at Flemington.
“Con said his father was the custodian of the bag,” Judge Lewis said
Judge Lewis said the Board heard a number of discrepancies in the evidence of Con and Tony Karakatsanis.
He said that Con had told of seeing his father drenching the horse 15 to 20 times and on each occasion used a raring bit and a twitch had been used while Tony had said he did not need a twitch to stomach tube Howmuchdoyouloveme as he was an easy horse to drench.
Judge Lewis said Con Karakatsanis had been unable to explain why he should act in such a way when he was at the gate.
“The Board is far from impressed with his explanation,” Judge Lewis said.
“Having considered both oral and documentary evidence the Board has come to the conclusion that version of events given by Tony and Con as to the critical issues should not be accepted,” Judge Lewis said.
“The Board is comfortably satisfied to draw the following inferences:
“Tony was aware that the bag he was carrying to the box of Howmuchdoyouloveme contained tubing equipment,” Judge Lewis said.
“Con was in the process of locking the gates of the front gates of the stable.
“And both Tony and Con intended to tube the horse on race day prior to taking the horse to the races.
“On November 3 just before Howmuchdoyouloveme was to go to the races Tony Karakatsanis with prior knowledge and acquiescence of his son Con was preparing to stomach tube the horse.
“He had the time and opportunity to do so. As part of his preparation Tony had placed a bag containing some of the accoutrements of stomach tubing equipment in the horse’s box.
“Con was an active participant in the arrangements. He was in the process of securing the stable premises.”
Judge Lewis said Tony Karakatsanis was unable to complete necessary preparations and therefore the horse was not stomach tubed because of the arrival of Compliance Assurance Team.