Legendary Horse Trainer Takes Legal Action Against Punters
Iconic US horse trainer Bob Baffert has filed a lawsuit against two punters who threatened to release a damaging video, which they claimed would "end him." Baffert, known for his success in the racing industry, is suing for defamation and extortion following allegedly harmful comments made on social media.
Defamation and Extortion Claims
Baffert's legal action targets two X (formerly Twitter) users with significant social media influence. The lawsuit, filed on Wednesday, accuses Justin Wunderler (@SwiftHitter) and Daniel Dicorcia (@barshoelife) of engaging in behavior intended to attract followers and financial gain. It alleges that Wunderler encouraged his followers to bring dangerous objects to throw at Baffert before the Belmont Stakes in June this year. Furthermore, the complaint claims that Wunderler accused Baffert of slaughtering horses on national TV and suggested doping allegations.
Video Threat and Extortion Allegations
One of the main accusations in the lawsuit is the extortion claim. Wunderler supposedly possesses a video of undisclosed content that he believes will harm Baffert's reputation. The complaint suggests that the video may have been edited deceptively to create a scandal. Baffert denies any wrongdoing and assures that the full context of the video would disprove any negative portrayal.
Punters Demand Money and Damages
In addition to their threats, Wunderler and Dicorcia allegedly demanded money from Baffert. It is worth noting that Baffert was previously monitored by 24-hour security due to the nature of the threats and accusations against him. Wunderler claims that he was advised by his lawyer to take a break from X (formerly Twitter) but dismisses any allegations of extortion or manipulation of videos.
A Celebrated Trainer Seeking Compensation
Baffert, America's most famous horse trainer, holds the record for the most Kentucky Derby wins with six, despite one victory being invalidated due to a failed drug test by his horse, Medina Spirit. He seeks more than £60,000 in damages as he fights to protect his reputation and prove his innocence against the allegations made by the two punters.