Bookie Simon Beasley disqualified for four years, fined
April 03, 2009 12:38pm
UPDATE 1.01pm: BOOKIE Simon Beasley apologised for his behaviour today after he was disqualified from racing for four years.
Beasley, one of the biggest bookmakers in the country, described the verdict at the Racing Appeals and Disciplinary Board, who also handed down a $50,000 fine, as "a very disappointing day for me".
"Clearly, I have broken the rules of racing in this state and I'm very sorry and I'm very remorseful for that," Beasley said.
"I have caused a lot of anguish for a lot of people and I apologise for that.
"I want to thank my beautiful wife Meredith and our family friends have been absolutely fantastic.
"It's been a very difficult time for me, but we will move on. There has been a fair deal of strain, but I'm a big fellow I can handle these things.
"There is lots of opportunities around the corner."
Beasley said the term of the disqualification had been expected and he did not forsee any flow on action from the Australian Taxation Office.
He said he accepted the decision of the RAD Board as he had "broken the rules".
"We haven't done the right thing and we have to face up to the disqualification."
Beasley pleaded guilty to two improper practice charges. The first involved not recording 1818 bets that totalled more than $4 million in turnover.
The second was that he attempted to destroy more than 7000 racing files on computers at his South Yarra offices that were relevant to the steward's inquiry.
Beasley has a share in a horse - Husson's Lightning - engaged at Moonee Valley races tonight.
Racing Victoria Limited stewards and the RAD Board gave permission for the horse to race under Beasley's name.
"It's got a good each way chance," Beasley said.
The disqualification starts from midnight tonight.
RAD Board chairman Judge Russell Lewis disqualified Beasley for three years on each of the two improper practice charges he faced.
Judge Lewis ordered that one year from the second charge be served accumulatively with the first disqualification.
He said given extenuating circumstances of the exhaustive inquiry, which stretched over 30 months, a fine was appropriate and Beasley has until April 30 to pay the $50,000 fine.
Judge Lewis described Beasley's behaviour as "disgraceful".
He said Beasley had the opportunity to "come clean" when first questioned about his bookmaking activities in May, 2008, but chose to "lie".
Judge Lewis said Beasley's lies were part of his scheme to "maximise profits".