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100-year ban after US frog-juice positives

USA: A quarter-horse trainer in Oklahoma has been suspended for 100 years - albeit 80 of them a suspended sentence - in the latest penalty handed down for dermorphin positives in the US.

This is the substance better known as 'frog juice' because it occurs naturally in the skin of a South American frog.

The Oklahoma Racing Commission suspended trainer Roberto Sanchez-Munoz for 100 years and fined him $100,000 for 10 different positives for the Class 1 drug found in his horses during last year's Quarter Horse meeting at Remington Park.

Munoz's brother and assistant trainer, Alejandro Sanchez-Munoz, was also suspended for 20 years and fined $10,000. The bans are due to kick in on February 21.

Dermorphin is a powerful painkiller, said to be 40 times more powerful than morphine. After a new test was developed last April, there were a rash of positive tests for the illegal substance, both in lower-grade and quarter-horses, in Louisiana, Nebraska and New Mexico as well as Oklahoma.

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