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Feds Can Auction Horses in Los Zetas Cartel Drug Case

Alan Crowhurst, Getty Images

A federal judge in Dallas will allow prosecutors to sell over 400 race horses that were owned by people that allegedly are associated with the Los Zetas cartel.

463 horses were seized by authorities, but prosecutors have said in court documents that four have died due to overcrowded conditions. Officials claim that care for the horses is also expensive.

Fifteen people were charged in the investigation which is centered on a Oklahoma horse ranch. One of the men charged in the investigation is Jose Trevino Morales, purported to be the brother of the leaders of the Zetas cartel according to prosecutors.

U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks gave prosecutors permission last week to auction the horses and hold the proceeds until the case is over.

One of the horses seized, Mr. Piloto, was allegedly given performance enhancing drugs in 2010 the horse won and that other competing horses were stalled at the gate so Mr. Piloto could win the race. Those allegations of stalling were denied by Ruidoso Downs Race Track.

Tremor Enterprises, the owner of Mr. Piloto, is alleged to be a front for the Zetas in the United States.

The affidavit also asserts that Mr. Piloto was given illegal performance enhancing substances 15 days prior to the 2010 race.

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