WHEELING -- The former chairman of the West Virginia Racing Commission is suing Miner Kennel and its owner for defamation.

Dean Miner publicly accused George T. Sidiropolis of attempting to extort bribes of up to $50,000 from one or more West Virginia greyhound breeders who desired to secure one or more kennel booking contracts from West Virginia racetracks, according to a complaint filed Oct. 9 in Ohio Circuit Court.

Sidiropolis claims Miner disclosed false information with actual knowledge of the falsity of the statements and with reckless disregard and criminal indifference to truth in a malicious attempt to harm him.

On Oct. 9, 2008, Jack Swint published an Internet news blog claiming Miner told him Sidiropolis had been demanding bribes, according to the suit.

Sidiropolis claims Miner had made similar false allegations to others.

Sidiropolis is suing for general and punitive damages for humiliation; mental and emotional distress; embarrassment; loss of reputation; annoyance; inconvenience; frustration; agitation; increased costs and expenses; economic injury and damage to credibility.

He is being represented by Ronald W. Zavolta of Zavolta Law Offices.

Ohio Circuit Court case number: 09-C-342

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