Racehorse Trainer’s Doping Indictment Triggers Call for Cruelty Investigations

Local Police Departments Called Upon to Pursue Cruelty-to-Animals Charges Against Jorge Navarro Over Horse’s Doping, Death

For Immediate Release:
May 7, 2020

David Perle 202-483-7382

Norfolk, Va.

Today, PETA called on Palm Beach County Sheriff Ric Bradshaw and Hallandale Beach Police Department Chief of Police Sonia Quiñones to launch investigations into whether cruelty-to-animals laws were violated, following the alleged illegal drugging of the horse XY Jet at Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach and his death at Palm Meadows Thoroughbred Training Center in Boynton Beach. PETA also requests that, if warranted, the police file criminal charges against XY Jet’s trainer, Jorge Navarro, who was indicted by federal authorities in March for the alleged administration of illegal performance-enhancing drugs (PED) to horses used for racing.

Eight-year-old XY Jet—who was trained by Navarro at Gulfstream Park and Palm Meadows and earned more than $3 million for his owners—died in January after a “routine gallop.” According to the indictment, Navarro allegedly directed a fellow trainer to administer a PED to the horse before a race at Gulfstream Park in 2019, and the PEDs allegedly favored by Navarro can cause horses to suffer heart attacks, which was reportedly XY Jet’s cause of death. PETA notes that, given Navarro’s alleged doping of the horse, XY Jet’s death could violate Florida’s criminal cruelty-to-animals statute, which makes it a crime to commit an intentional act that results in an animal’s “cruel death, or excessive or repeated infliction of unnecessary pain or suffering.”

“If Jorge Navarro pumped a horse full of drugs, he should be charged with cruelty to animals as well as for illegal drug use,” says PETA Senior Vice President Kathy Guillermo. “XY Jet is the victim, and PETA is calling on the Boynton Beach and Hallandale Beach police departments to investigate and hold Navarro accountable for cruel treatment of the horse.”

A trainer who worked with Navarro reportedly claimed that he had helped make multiple horses “disappear” whom Navarro had “killed and broke down.”

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—opposes speciesism, the human-supremacist belief that other animals are nothing more than commodities. For more information, please visit PETA.org.

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