Harness racing trainer Christopher Oakes was sentenced to 36 months in jail on Thursday, March 3, 2022, for his pleading guilty in the Federal Governments major horse doping cases.
Oakes went before Honorable Mary Kay Vyskocil of the United States District Judge Southern District of New York. In addition to the 36-month jail sentence, Oakes was also fined $62,821.
Oakes, 58, pled guilty to one count of misbranding and drug adulteration with intent to defraud or deceive and faces up to three years in prison in addition to any monetary fines.
Earlier when Oakes changed his plea to guilty, he told Judge Vyskocil “I purchased medications from Dr. Seth Fishman and Dr. Gregor Skelton and his assistant Ross Cohen and administered the medications to the horses in my care to gain an unfair advantage.”
Oakes replied that he raced at Yonkers Raceway and admitted that he used the drugs on his horses that raced there.
When Vyskocil asked Oakes why he gave the drugs to his horses. He answered, “To try to get an advantage and, hopefully, things would do better.”
Oakes said the doping routine he had described began in early 2019 and concluded with his arrest in March, 2020.
By Steve Wolf, for Harnesslink