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FEI Tribunal issues final decisions in horse abuse case

Sunday, 06 February 2022
FEI Tribunal

The FEI Tribunal has issued its final decisions in a horse abuse case concerning use of hind boots with nails inside, involving the athlete Esam Zbibi and his support personnel Hicham Gharib. 

A statement from the FEI announcing the decisions, details: 

"The FEI Tribunal has issued its Final Decision in a Horse Abuse case involving an athlete and his support personnel.

This Horse Abuse case involves the athlete Esam Zbibi (FEI ID 10184793/GBR) and his support personnel Hicham Gharib, regarding the horse HH Sigma (FEI ID 105XP18/UAE) at the CSI3* in Abu Dhabi (UAE) 23-26 February 2021.

The FEI officials reported that the athlete had used hind boots with nails inside them on the horse. A steward at the warm up arena had noticed that the horse was jumping extremely high with its hind legs and asked the Chief Steward to check the hind boots. Before he could do so, Hicham Gharib, the support personnel of the athlete, threw the hind boots outside of the warm up arena. The Chief Steward found both hind boots and in every boot there was a nail as well as blood stains.

In its Final Decision, the FEI Tribunal ruled that Esam Zbibi had engaged in Horse Abuse and imposed a four-year ineligibility period on him starting from the date of the decision, meaning he is suspended until 1 February 2026. He was also fined CHF 10,000 and asked to pay costs of CHF 2,000.

The FEI Tribunal also ruled that Hicham Garib had engaged in Incorrect Behaviour and imposed a one year ineligibility period on starting from the date of the decision, meaning he is suspended until 1 February 2023. He was also fined CHF 5,000 and asked to pay costs of CHF 2,000.

The full decisions are available here. 



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