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Yasiel Puig Going through New Prices In Unlawful Sports activities Betting Case

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Two months after Yasiel Puig withdrew a responsible plea in a complete unlawful sports activities betting case, the previous Main League Baseball outfielder is going through new prices within the matter.

Puig, who withdrew his responsible plea for making false statements to federal regulation enforcement officers, is now going through obstruction of justice prices in reference to the federal investigation. Puig, a one-time MLB All-Star, initially agreed to plead responsible to creating false statements in November concerning a sequence of sports activities wagers he made with an unlawful operator. However weeks later, Puig withdrew the responsible plea citing new proof that prompted his attorneys to contest the costs.

Over a three-month interval by September 2019, Puig positioned practically 900 sports activities wagers by a California-based unlawful sports activities betting ring, in keeping with court docket data. Whereas Puig allegedly positioned wagers on tennis, soccer, and basketball video games, he isn’t accused of putting bets on baseball as an lively MLB participant.

Puig opened the 2019 season with the Cincinnati Reds, the place he spent the primary half of the season, earlier than the Reds despatched him to Cleveland on July 31 in a three-team commerce. That was the final 12 months Puig appeared in an MLB uniform.

Explaining the costs

Starting in 2019, Puig began to position sports activities wagers by a third-party agent who labored for an unlawful sports activities betting operation, in keeping with court docket data. The wagers had been positioned with a sports activities betting ring operated by Wayne Nix, a former minor league baseball participant with the Oakland Athletics group. Nix, in keeping with prosecutors, enlisted quite a few brokers to position and settle for wagers with the unlawful operation. The wagers, court docket data present, had been facilitated by Sand Island Sports activities, a Costa Rica-based entity.

By that June, Puig owed Nix’s playing enterprise $282,900 for sports activities playing losses, in keeping with court docket filings. Puig repaid a portion of his debt with examine funds totaling $200,000, then resumed wagering with the operation on July 4, 2019, a court docket submitting exhibits.

In response to court docket filings, Puig met a person described as “Agent 1” at a youth baseball camp in 2019. At a gathering final January, federal investigators offered Puig with an image of the person and questioned the outfielder on whether or not he talked with the agent on his sample of sports activities wagers. In response, Puig informed investigators he solely knew the agent by baseball, prosecutors famous.

Shortly after Puig appeared in US District Courtroom in California final November, a consultant for the outfielder stated that he felt rushed and unprepared for the assembly with regulation enforcement officers. Puig, a local of Cuba, carried out the interview with out legal counsel and was not supplied with an interpreter, stated Lisette Carnet, an agent for the previous MLB participant. After reviewing new proof offered to Puig’s authorized staff final November, attorneys for the outfielder determined to withdraw the responsible plea.

“I need to clear my title,” Puig stated in a November 2022 assertion. “I by no means ought to have agreed to plead responsible to against the law I didn’t commit.”

Beneath an indictment filed final Friday, Puig is accused of constructing false statements to officers from the US Division of Homeland Safety, Homeland Safety Investigations, the US Lawyer’s Workplace, and the Inside Income Service legal investigations division. The statements from Puig had been allegedly made throughout a Jan. 27, 2022, interview with federal regulation enforcement officers. In response to the indictment, Puig allegedly “endeavored to affect, hinder, and impede the due administration of justice by withholding info” from the companies. Specifically, Puig withheld details about Agent 1’s function within the operation and the fee of his playing money owed, in keeping with prosecutors.

Puig reportedly neared a cope with the Atlanta Braves in July 2020, however talks collapsed when the outfielder examined constructive for COVID-19. Final season, Puig hit .277 with 21 dwelling runs and 73 RBIs for the Kiwoom Heroes of South Korea’s KBO League.

Final month, Puig and his agent met with two MLB groups on the Winter Conferences in San Diego, Jon Heyman of the New York Publish reported. Whereas Puig remains to be listed as a Kiwoom Heroes participant on the official web site of the South Korean staff, the membership will not be anticipated to re-sign the outfielder, in keeping with a number of experiences.

If Puig indicators with an MLB membership, he may face punishment from the league in reference to the unlawful wagers. Beneath MLB Rule 21, Half D, the MLB commissioner has vast discretion in sanctioning a participant who’s caught putting a wager with an unlawful bookmaker.

An lawyer for Puig didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark from Sports activities Deal with on Tuesday morning.

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