Last of quarter horses tied to Mexican drug cartel sold

One racehorse, Tempting Dash, sold for $1.7 million in Oklahoma City on Friday.
by Nolan Clay Published: November 6, 2013
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The federal government has sold the last of more than 400 quarter horses and horse embryos seized during an investigation of an Oklahoma-based horse racing operation.

The operation was financed by Los Zetas, a violent Mexican drug cartel, federal prosecutors alleged.

One champion racehorse, Tempting Dash, sold Friday for a record $1.7 million at Heritage Place, at a well-known auction facility in Oklahoma City.

Also sold Friday were Mr. Piloto, Do Not Tempt Me, Dashin Follies and Separate Fire.

The federal government said proceeds from the sale of all the quarter horses and embryos are close to $12 million.

Most of the horses were cared for on a sprawling ranch in Lexington. FBI agents in June 2012 arrested the ranch operator, Jose Trevino Morales, 47, who is the older brother of two leaders of the Zetas drug cartel.

He was sentenced in September to 20 years in federal prison for his role in a money-laundering conspiracy. “I am not a Zeta. I don't have aggressive intentions toward anybody,” he told the judge at the sentencing.

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by Nolan Clay
Sr. Reporter
Nolan Clay was born in Oklahoma and has worked as a reporter for The Oklahoman since 1985. He covered the Oklahoma City bombing trials and witnessed bomber Tim McVeigh's execution. His investigative reports have brought down public officials,...
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