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Ex-Dodger Yasiel Puig faces new charges in sports gambling probe



Former Dodgers outfielder Yasiel Puig, who final yr withdrew from an settlement to plead responsible to mendacity to federal authorities in a sports activities playing investigation, is now going through new expenses within the case.

Puig, 32, is scheduled to be arraigned Friday in downtown Los Angeles on two counts of creating false statements and one rely of obstruction of justice, based on a federal case docket.

In November, the Cuban-born baseball participant had agreed to plead responsible to at least one rely of creating false statements and agreed to pay a advantageous of at the very least $55,000. He would have been eligible for probation beneath the settlement.

However weeks later, Puig withdrew from the plea deal.

“I need to clear my identify,” Puig mentioned in a Nov. 30 assertion. “I by no means ought to have agreed to plead responsible to a criminal offense I didn’t commit.”

Federal authorities had been investigating an unlawful sports activities playing operation run by Wayne Nix, a former minor-league baseball participant who lives in Newport Seaside, when Puig allegedly lied in interviews about his involvement, based on the preliminary plea settlement.

In keeping with federal prosecutors, Puig lied when he instructed investigators in a Jan. 27, 2022, interview that he had by no means mentioned betting with an unnamed agent working for Nix, described within the plea deal solely as “a former collegiate baseball participant and personal baseball coach.” In truth, the federal government alleges, Puig had incurred debt of greater than $280,000 on sports activities bets positioned with that agent within the first half of 2019.

After paying off a part of the debt, the federal government alleges, Puig made “899 bets on tennis, soccer, and basketball video games” by way of an offshore web site related to Nix’s ring.

There isn’t any proof within the plea settlement that Puig, who performed for the Dodgers, Cincinnati Reds and Cleveland Indians in his Main League Baseball profession, guess on baseball.

Puig’s legal professional, Keri Axel, mentioned in a November assertion that “important new proof” had prompted the withdrawal from the plea settlement. Axel didn’t say within the assertion what that new proof is likely to be, and she or he instructed The Occasions by way of a spokesman: “We’re ready to publicly share that data within the applicable discussion board and on the applicable time.”

Nevertheless, in a courtroom listening to earlier that month, she advised that messages left for Puig by the unnamed agent and his affiliate raised the chance that Puig might need been entrapped.

Of the Zoom interview through which Puig is alleged to have lied to investigators, Axel mentioned: “Mr. Puig, who has a third-grade schooling, had untreated mental-health points, and didn’t have his personal interpreter or legal authorized counsel with him.”

Occasions workers author Invoice Shaikin contributed to this report.

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