texas

Promoter Accuses 2 Star Calf Ropers of Rigging Rodeo

A rodeo promoter is suing two star calf ropers, accusing them of rigging an event in Arlington, Texas, last year so that they could get a cut of a possible $1 million prize.

RFD-TV Events made the allegations in a lawsuit Tuesday against three-time world champion calf roper Tuf Cooper and the world's current top-ranked roper, Timber Moore. The alleged scheme centered on a bonus reward for those who qualified for the event rather than being invited, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported. Qualifiers could earn up to $1 million from a "side pot" for winning any of seven competitions at The American Rodeo on March 1, 2015.

Cooper and Moore agreed to throw a competition to improve a qualifier's chances. The qualifier won the event, with Cooper finishing second and Moore third, and all three were to split the winning check of $517,000 -- $100,000 for the first-place finish and $417,000 from the "side pot," the lawsuit alleged.

However, rodeo organizers soon learned of the scheme and stopped payment on the check, the lawsuit said. RFD-TV Events now wants to recover other prize money earned by Cooper and Moore up to $100,000.

NBC 5 has reached out to the people named in the lawsuit for comment, but they have not yet responded.

Read the complete statement from the rodeo sponsor's attorney below.

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Statement-of-C-Gregory-Shamoun (PDF)
Statement-of-C-Gregory-Shamoun (Text)

Plaintiffs’ Original Petition

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Plaintiffs Original Petition Exhibits Redacted 8 9 2016 (PDF)
Plaintiffs Original Petition Exhibits Redacted 8 9 2016 (Text)

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