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    Greyhound Illegally Moved to China
Greyhound Illegally Moved to China

Greyhound Illegally Moved to China

Irish authorities are actively investigating the circumstances surrounding the unexpected transition of a champion greyhound, Gougane Jet, from a purported Irish racing acquisition to its current listing for stud services in China.

Gougane Jet, a distinguished three-year-old greyhound previously hailed as the British sprinter of the year, had showcased remarkable prowess by clinching victory in 29 out of 42 races since May 2022, prior to its reported sale to an Irish owner for racing endeavours in October the same year.

Recent developments have seen the greyhound being marketed for stud services at a breeding facility situated in Hebei Province, China, raising pertinent queries and concerns within the greyhound racing community. Greyhound Racing Ireland (GRI), the regulatory body overseeing the sport, confirmed its scrutiny of the matter in 2023.

Following a parliamentary inquiry initiated by left-wing deputy Paul Murphy, GRI divulged that subsequent to their internal inquiries, a formal complaint had been lodged with Irish police, Garda Siochána, in October 2023. In light of the ongoing investigation by law enforcement, GRI refrained from providing additional commentary on the situation.

Image Source: Midjourney

Details of the investigation conducted by Gardaí remain shrouded in ambiguity, encompassing aspects such as the legality and financial mechanisms underpinning Gougane Jet's transition to China. The officials have not released any statements in response to queries raised concerning the inquiry.

Greyhound racing is outlawed in China, although instances of illicit racing activities persist. The absence of comprehensive animal welfare legislation in China further complicates the ethical dimensions of Gougane Jet's relocation.

Gougane Jet's previous co-owners from the UK, Steve Oliver, Eammon Johnston, and Peter Curtis, refrained from providing any public statements regarding the matter. The identity of the Irish citizen who bought Gougane Jet remains undisclosed.

The MWD Partnership, Gougane Jet's former UK trainers, revealed that the greyhound had been sold to a Longford-based owner Liam O'Brien for £30,000. However, Mr O'Brien has chosen to remain silent on the matter, declining requests for commentary.

The Greyhound Board of Great Britain has initiated its own independent investigation, which commenced in December. MWD Partnership emphasised that the decision to sell the greyhound was solely attributed to the owners, who reportedly received an irresistible offer, disregarding previous attempts to retain ownership.

MWD expressed remorse and frustration, having made futile attempts to prevent the dog's exportation. The partnership disclosed its unsuccessful bid to repurchase Gougane Jet for £20,000, citing the disheartening turn of events.

Image Source: Midjourney

Mark Wallis, a distinguished UK champion trainer and MWD partner, clarified in his commentary for the Irish Examiner that neither he nor his associates were involved in the sale of Gougane Jet. Wallis underscored the limitations placed on trainers concerning owners' decisions to sell dogs, emphasising their lack of legal authority to impede such transactions.

One of MWD's partners, Michelle Connolly, was recently exposed by the Irish Examiner for her involvement in several animal cruelty offences in early 2022, and remains subject to a 10-year ban on dog ownership.


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