AQHA Says Cloning Fight Isn't Over stock photo

AQHA Victorious in Cloning Lawsuit

The American Quarter Horse Association can ban cloned Quarter Horses from its breed association. The United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit entered an order denying the plaintiffs’ petition for a rehearing this week.

The court’s latest action solidified a January 2015 ruling stating that the plaintiffs failed to prove the AQHA was involved in a conspiracy to restrain trade. The court stated, “AQHA is not a competitor in the allegedly relevant market for elite Quarter Horses.” The judgment in AQHA’s favor reversed the lower court’s decision.

“We are delighted with this decision,” said Craig Huffhines, AQHA executive vice president. “Our staff and legal teams have devoted countless hours fighting for our members’ rights, and we’re grateful for the Fifth Circuit’s decision that leaves intact the well-reasoned opinion in AQHA’s favor.”

Two AQHA members who own more than a dozen cloned Quarter Horses sued the association in 2012 for the right to register the horses. The suit was filed after the association decided that quarter horses produced by any cloning process are not eligible for registration.

In July 2013, a jury awarded the men the right to register the clones, but no monetary damages. AQHA announced it would appeal the decision shortly after the verdict.
Currently, no breed association registers cloned horses.