Track asks to distribute Breeders' Cup winnings

Horse Racing

January 29, 2003|By Jon Morgan | Jon Morgan,SUN STAFF

Arlington Park Racecourse yesterday asked a court for permission to distribute winnings to bettors on last year's Breeders' Cup who would have collected had fraud not occurred.

Arlington, the track near Chicago where the races were held in October, withheld the payout on the Ultra Pick Six after authorities noticed a suspicious pattern involving the wager made by a Baltimore man. In a Pick Six, the bettor attempts to select the winners of six consecutive races.

Derrick Davis, 29, held the only winning tickets. But he has admitted he conspired with a fraternity brother who worked for the computer firm that processes bets to electronically rig the Cup wager. The fraternity brother, Christopher Harn of Newark, Del., was fired by the tote company and has pleaded guilty.

They are awaiting sentencing in the case along with a third man, Glen DaSilva of New York, who admitted rigging earlier bets.

Arlington put Davis' winnings in an escrow account, which is now worth $3.08 million. The track has asked the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York for permission to distribute the money among bettors who correctly selected five of the six winners.

Prosecutors in the bet-rigging case have filed motions to forfeit the money, a process that would also result in the release of the winnings, but which could take several weeks.

Michael Kulstad, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, said yesterday he had not seen Arlington Park's petition and couldn't comment.

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