Polo Horses' Owner Also Mysterious

By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 23, 2009 12:15 PM CDT
Tarps shield collapsed horses of the Lechuza Polo team as they are worked on at the International Polo Club Palm Beach.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Exactly what killed 21 polo horses in Florida is not known, but details of their enigmatic owner are emerging in spades. Victor Vargas has succeeded at the tricky proposition of banking in Hugo Chavez’s Venezuela, and tried the US market—with less-than-stellar results. In 1993, he had to settle with the Fed for $1.5 million, and can’t invest here without government permission. Time takes a look at the secretive multimillionaire.

“People write stories about me saying I have a Ferrari, a plane, a yacht,” Vargas told an interviewer. “But it’s not true. I've got three planes, two yachts, six houses. I’ve been rich all my life!” The polo enthusiast hasn’t been seen around Florida since the weekend’s tragedy, but all agree he loved his horses. “We live with them,” the team’s captain said. “If there’s anyone who never wants to see their horses killed, it’s us.”