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Damien Oliver - Manikato Stakes Night at Moonee Valley Racecourse 24.09.2010

Damien Oliver: been charged by Racing Victoria over betting scandal

  PICTURE: Getty Images  

Damien Oliver charged over betting scandal

Australia: Racing Victoria stewards issued two charges against Damien Oliver on Tuesday after the top jockey, who has been stood down pending an inquiry next week, admitted to betting on a rival horse.

The admission and charges come three weeks after it emerged Oliver was under investigation for placing a A$10,000 (£6,500) bet on rival horse Miss Octopussy at Moonee Valley on October 1, 2010 - a race in which he finished sixth on second-favourite Europa Point.

The rider is also charged with having in his possession, and using, a mobile phone in the jockeys' room prior to the race.

Oliver, who finished 11th in this year's Emirates Melbourne Cup on 2011 winner Americain, is one of the highest-profile jockeys in Australia and has won seven Melbourne jockeys' premierships, two Melbourne Cups, four Caulfield Cups, two Cox Plates and a Golden Slipper.

Racing Victoria also revealed Oliver is not alone in being investigated. Chief executive Rob Hines told AAP Racing: "There are a number of ongoing investigations. Some of those may lead to inquiries and charges."

Hines also dismissed suggestions the organisation was not doing enough to safeguard the sport's integrity and said it had been legally impossible to act before Monday's admission by Oliver.
"It has been alleged in various news reports that Damien Oliver had confessed to the illegal bet on Miss Octopussy some weeks ago," Hines said.

"Following a number of interviews . . . a signed statement was received yesterday from Mr Oliver which contained an admission which enabled the stewards to lay the charges and stand down Mr Oliver pending the inquiry."

The hearing will be held at the horseracing body's headquarters in Flemington at 10am (11pm GMT on Monday) on Tuesday, November 20.

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