The American Quarter Horse Association announced it will appeal and ultimately take any legal steps necessary to overturn Tuesday’s verdict regarding cloning. A 10-person jury ruled AQHA violated state and federal antitrust laws by conspiring to banBa cloned horses from the group’s registry.
“The Executive Committee unanimously voted to continue to fight for our members’ rights,” said AQHA President Johne Dobbs.
In 2012, Abraham & Veneklasen Joint Venture et al, v. AQHA was filed alleging AQHA Rule REG106.1 violates federal and state anti-trust laws. The rule prohibits the registration of cloned horses and their offspring in AQHA’s breed registry.
While the plaintiffs received a favorable verdict, the men also sought almost $6 million in damages. The jury awarded none.
AQHA Executive Vice President Don Treadway, Jr. re-emphasized his disappointment with the trial’s outcome. “It continues to be our position that our rule prohibiting the registration of clones and their offspring is both reasonable and lawful,” he said.
“When individuals with shared interests, goals and values come together to form a voluntary association to serve a common purpose, the members have a right to determine the rules for their association. The wisdom of our membership – which is largely not in favor of the registration of clones and their offspring – has not been upheld by this verdict,” Treadway said.
A call to the plaintiffs’ attorney was not immediately returned.