Several people were arrested Monday at the stables of Vancouver’s Hastings Racecourse.
In a prepared statement released to media outlets, racecourse general manager Darren MacDonald confirmed that officers with the Canada Border Services Agency “escorted a number of individuals employed by various horse owners off the site.”
MacDonald said the workers were supervised by owners and trainers “that are stabled at Hastings Racecourse to race.”
They were working in the backstretch, where horses are stabled and employees are sometimes housed in small rooms. He said the horse owners were not affiliated with the Great Canadian Gaming Corporation that operates the racecourse.
The next live racing is scheduled at the track this Friday night. The season runs until the end of October.
There are several hundred horses in the stables during the racing season. Each horse has a trainer, an exercise rider, groom and a hot-walker who walks the horse after it has trained.
It is believed as many as 26 workers were taken from the stables and that enforcement officers knew who they were looking for. Some trainers were impacted, while others weren’t. CBSA agents had not raided the stables in recent history.