"The California Horse Racing Board's number one priority is the safety and wellbeing of all race horses." - Carol Ann Nolan, CHRB Lead Investigator, Northern Division Enforcement, CAFI Vice President
On July 23, 2014, the California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) announced the one-year suspension of Cesar Nungaray-Guzman's CHRB license with a recommendation that he be denied any future licensing by the CHRB after he pled guilty to a misdemeanor charge of animal cruelty in Contra Costa County Superior Court.
Nungaray-Guzman, a veterinary assistant at the time, was the subject of a CHRB investigation in 2012 after Contra Costa County Animal Control Services removed four malnourished, mistreated and neglected former racehorses from his ranch in rural Contra Costa County.
"The type of negligence in this case is rare," said Carol Ann Nolan, CHRB Lead Investigator, Northern Division Enforcement and California Association of Fraud Investigators (CAFI) Vice President. "When any form of negligence is brought to a CHRB investigator's attention, action is swift and licensees are investigated thoroughly. If the investigation reveals wrongdoing, as it did in this case, we pursue disciplinary action against the licensees to the fullest extent of both administrative and criminal laws."
CHRB investigators worked closely with Contra Costa County Animal Services after the four racehorses Nungaray-Guzman acquired at Golden Gate Fields were found to be mistreated. Nungaray-Guzman was originally charged with several felonies. He was ordered to perform community services, placed on probation through August 2017 and was fined. During his term of probation, he is not allowed to own or possess any animals.
"CHRB investigators are true guardians of race horses in our golden state," said California Statewide Law Enforcement Association (CSLEA) President Alan Barcelona. "They are behind the scenes, working on a daily basis to ensure the integrity of the industry and to investigate the safety of these prize-winning animals."