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Rovers star James Coppinger and former team mate Mark Wilson charged over horse fixing

James Coppinger celebrates his winning goal early in the second half with team mate Mark Wilson. Picture: Kate Evans

James Coppinger celebrates his winning goal early in the second half with team mate Mark Wilson. Picture: Kate Evans

DONCASTER Rovers midfielder James Coppinger and fellow former player Mark Wilson have been charged with race fixing.

Coppinger, currently on a long-term loan to Nottingham Forest and Wilson, who played for Rovers until last season, are among nine people charged with “serious” breaches of the rules of horse racing following an investigation by the British Horseracing Authority.

The pair, along with Ipswich Town striker Michael Chopra and six others, are alleged to have conspired with jockey Andrew Heffernan to fix races with bets being laid to lose on betting exchanges on races run bewteen November 2010 and March 2011.

The trio are charged with conspiring to “commit a corrupt or fraudulent practice” under the rules of racing.

If found guilty of the charges they face long bans from involvement with racing, including attending racecourses or talking to licensed individuals. The entry-level for the offences is a three-year ban.

Coppinger, Chopra and Wilson are alleged to have been part of a fixing operation that also included five other individuals not licensed under the rules of racing.

Coppinger, 31, joined Fores on loan until January in August after making 263 appearances in an eight-year spell while former Manchester United trainee Mark Wilson is currently unattached after leaving Oxford United in the close season.

 

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