The news of the investigation follows the suspension of 28 greyhounds by New South Wales Racing (NSW Racing), after ABC News revealed that their trainers had used live animals as bait to ‘blood’ (gain a competitive edge) the dogs for track racing.
The investigation will be headed up by Racing Minister Bill Byrne and barrister Alan Macsporran, and will be funded by the Australian racing industry.
Bill Byrne commented on the investigation
“The government’s intention over the next three months is to establish what has occurred within the racing industry, particularly the greyhounds, how could this have occurred [and] how we’re going to move forward in order to retain the industry in a serviceable fashion going forward,”
“Mr Macsporran’s brief is to provide strong recommendations to the government regarding the future of racing and greyhound racing in this state.”
It is believed that thirteen greyhound trainers are implicated in the live baiting scandal.
Australian Greyhound racing operations have been criticised by politicians and senior industry figures. Last month Tatts Group CEO Robbie Cooke stated that Tatts Group may be forced to withdraw advertising from greyhound racetracks if the allegations of corruption and animal cruelty prove to be true.
“It is awful, it is appalling, it is a situation where the industry and the regulators have let everybody down,” Mr Cooke said. “I don’t think there’s any sidestepping that.”