South Australia’s peak greyhound racing industry body has handed a life ban and $220,000 fine to a trainer, after its independent Integrity Hearing Panel (IHP) found him guilty of charges relating to animal mistreatment.

The charges were prompted by an ABC exclusive investigation last year, which published footage showing multiple greyhounds, including puppies, apparently being kicked and punched by a person on a property south-east of Adelaide.

The training licenses and registrations of trainers Tony Rasmussen and Lisa Rasmussen were immediately suspended following the ABC’s reporting.

Mr Rasmussen entered not guilty pleas to all 11 charges against him, but GRSA’s Integrity Hearings Panel today delivered its final determination, and found him guilty of all charges.

The majority of the charges relate to ill treatment of a greyhound, failure to prevent pain and suffering and endangering the health and welfare of a greyhound.

But Mr Rasmussen was also found guilty of conduct “detrimental to the interest, welfare, image, control or promotion of greyhound racing”.

GRSA said the penalty handed to Mr Rasmussen was the most significant ever delivered in South Australian greyhound racing.

GRSA said Lisa Rasmussen plead guilty to three charges before the IHP, including failing to prevent pain and suffering of a greyhound.

She has been disqualified for 15 years and fined $20,000.

The ABC has contacted Mr Rasmussen for comment.

RSPCA conducting separate investigation

It means the couple are not allowed to own or train any registered greyhounds for the duration of the ban and their registration has been cancelled, GRSA said.

The RSPCA said it was conducting a separate investigation, with potential criminal charges under consideration. 

Last month, the South Australian government appointed Victoria’s former Racing Integrity Commissioner, Sal Perna, to the newly created role of Greyhound Industry Reform Inspector (GIRI).

Sal Perna was appointed South Australia’s Greyhound Industry Reform Inspector in May.(AAP: Joe Castro)

Mr Perna will begin the role on July 1 and deliver a final report to the state’s racing minister in two years.

The drone vision filmed last year, and provided to the ABC, showed a man trying to drive his quad bike directly towards a dog on a training track.

In another video that appeared to have been filmed during the same session, the same man repeatedly kicked a black dog as it cowered in the corner of the track.

Other vision provided to the ABC shows a man grab one dog by the back leg and fling it in the direction he wants it to go.

GRSA says the penalty was the most significant ever delivered in South Australian greyhound racing.(ABC News)

Another video shows a man kick one puppy and repeatedly kick another to move them along a fence line. 

Several other videos show dogs on the property being punched and kicked.

In 2023, Mr Rasmussen told the ABC the man seen in the videos was a former employee who has been “dealt with” and no longer worked for the trainers because he was discovered to treat dogs badly.

He refused to name the individual or say when his employment had ceased.

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