NSW trainer receives interim ban after carcass found at property

AN interim suspension has been handed to greyhound trainer and breeder Harry Sarkis while the GRNSW investigates offences into luring and live baiting.

GRNSW compliance officers reported the discovery of “what appeared to be a rabbit carcass” on Sarkis’ property on Wednesday, July 27 during a planned kennel inspection. The GRNSW and RSPCA NSW were then sent to investigate.

AustralianRacingGreyhound understands that Sarkis moved his family and greyhounds to the property in question just two months prior to the find.

While the initial wave of inspections and interviews did not result in any formal charges, Sarkis will have until Wednesday, August 3 to show cause on why his interim suspension should be lifted before the coming steward’s inquiry.

The carcass discovery and interim suspension for Sarkis comes at a time of tension for a greyhound industry that’s fighting for its survival. 24 hours prior to the find, the industry’s supporters announced the ‘Fair Go Rally’, which is set to be held in Sydney on August 2.

GRNSW CEO Paul Newson, who has come under fire by participants and accused of being a mouthpiece for NSW Premier Mike Baird, said the industry would take a zero tolerance approach to poor animal welfare standards.

“Just in case any participant hasn’t got the message by now, as the industry regulator GRNSW will immediately and decisively take action if there is any suggestion that the racing rules have been breached, particularly those pertaining to cruel and sickening acts of live baiting,” said Newson, who dramatically quit the top post last week, and has been vocally criticising the industry on his Twitter feed since, despite remaining in employment with GRNSW.

Stewards will seek to prove Sarkis has breached Rule 86B of the Greyhound Racing Rules, which makes it an offence to:

• Use any live animal or animal carcass in connection with greyhound training, education or preparation to race or possess any live animal or animal carcass which is likely to be used as bait, quarry or lure to entice or encourage a greyhound to pursue it.

• Attempt to possess, or have possession of, or bring onto, any grounds, premises or within the boundaries of any property where greyhounds are, or are to be trained, kept or raced, any live animal, animal carcass or any part of an animal for the purpose of being, or which might reasonably be capable of being, or likely to be, used as bait, quarry or lure to entice or excite or encourage a greyhound to pursue it.

Any person found guilty of an offence under Rule 86B shall be disqualified for a period of not less than 10 years.

AustralianRacingGreyhound will report further on this story as it unfolds.

Past Discussion

  1. Yes I thought it was only a matter of time before they went after Harry. I read the transcript of his evidence. On many occasion he simply outsmarted Stephen Rushton QC arrogant and opinionated prick who had stated at the beginning he wanted the industry gone. (very unbiased) Yes I am sure it came as a rude shock to this man that ” a mere greyhound trainer” could come up with a brilliant answer. Harry also refused despite being  constantly bullied to name other people. Yes Stevie boy didn’t like that either.

    This is a disgrace. Harry is a man who is of an age and a cultural background that he would have eaten many a rabbit. This was of course scoffed at by stevie boy and when this arrogant QC despite Harry’s overwhelming evidence to the contrary virtually said ” we don’t care we don’t believe you” well that’s a frightening new rule  of evidence – if Stephen Rushton does not believe you – you are guilty. Let’s hope this arsehole never makes  it to the Supreme Court.

  2. How do we know that this person did not plant this decomposed carcass on the property, QC ‘s don’t like being made look  like a fool !  he got Potter and now he was gunning for Harry.

  3. BobWhitelaw  I doubt whether they had to go to that much trouble Bob. I don’t think there is a backyard in Australia that a rabbit hasn’t made a visit to. There was a big cull over on the North Shore (strictly not to be advertised  of course). They could hardly justify that on the grounds they were food I don’t think they’re on the menu over there except in some trendy bar for a week “just to see how they go” and as for the “some selfish person bred them and the council are just cleaning up after other  people- well from what I have seen of them they have breeding well under  control without any help from people.

    They would hardly be destroying wheat crops – no just making a mess in some designer cheque book garden and lowering the property prices in Sydney. That OK’s apparently.

    However if one dies in the yard of a greyhound trainer  in a semi rural area (where I can guarantee there would be at least two warrens within 200 metres of his place he must be live baiting and Baird has the hide to suggest this is not class warfare this is about “loving greyhounds” bullshit it is.