Did MLB Commissioner Bud Selig Commit a Crime?

Published: Nov 19, 2013 20:47pm EST
By Lance Rinker, Managing Editor for Konsume Sports

Please Note: This article was updated Nov 19, 2013 @ 08:47pm EST

 

As the Alex Rodriguez versus Bud Selig and Major League Baseball leadership saga continues to play out in the grievance hearings this week, there is one specific area of the case against Rodriguez and also against Major League Baseball that is deserving of headline status.

If Bud Selig and Major League Baseball, as Alex Rodriguez contends, knowingly purchased stolen records from the Biogenesis clinic then Selig and MLB have a major issue. While they still may successfully take down Rodriguez, as Selig has wanted to do for quite some time in an effort to shore up his own legacy and cover up his own role in allowing PED use to run rampant during most of his tenure as Commissioner of Baseball, Selig could find himself being taken down all the same.

The reason why Selig and MLB leadership, as well as the investigators they employed, could be in trouble is because evidence is starting to come to light that implicates each of them in the alleged theft of Biogenesis documents and related medical records as it pertains to their case against Rodriguez.

A Florida police department said that it had reopened an investigation into the theft of documents related to baseball's inquiry and Boca Raton police officer, Sandra Boonenberg, said the investigation was reopened nearly a month ago as a result of new information stemming from Rodriguez's lawsuit against MLB and the only details that were offered was that detectives have "a lot of leads that they're pursuing."

The documents were stolen in March from the car of former Biogenesis employee Porter Fischer, who took them from Biogenesis of America, the now-closed Florida anti-aging clinic where he worked.

Furthermore, ESPN has cited unidentified sources claiming that Bud Selig and MLB knowingly impeded the Florida investigation into Biogenesis and Anthony Bosch.

"MLB investigators knowingly purchased stolen documents in their quest to allow Commissioner Selig to act, for the first time, as if he was tough on PED use in baseball despite striking a cooperation deal with Anthony Bosch who MLB knows is under federal investigation for providing steroids to minors," Jordan Siev, one of Rodriguez's lawyers, said in a statement.

MLB has repeatedly denied the accusation.

"The truth continues to be that we did not knowingly purchase stolen documents and there is an active police investigation to determine if the documents were in fact stolen," the commissioner's office said in a statement.

To simplify all of this.

Porter Fischer is the former employee of Biogenesis who happened to be the one that originally took documents from the clinic that contained all of the records that Bud Selig had been salivating over obtaining. Someone, allegedly an investigator working for Bud Selig and MLB, then broke into Fischer’s car and stole the documents and all information related to the Biogenesis clinic. Then Bud Selig and MLB ended up with said documents and information related to the clinic and they claim there was nothing shady done on their part.

Unfortunately for Selig and MLB leadership, evidence is slowly being uncovered that could prove they may have participated in some less than honorable business practices to obtain the documents and intentionally got in the way of a Florida Department of Health investigation in the process.

At the very least, if what is being alleged about Selig and MLB is true then they have lied and given false statements to police investigators, as well as the Florida District Attorney’s office. If Alex Rodriguez’s attorney is somehow able to force Selig to take the stand and testify during the hearings this week then Selig will have to be completely honest about what he, his team of investigators, and MLB leadership knew about where the Biogenesis documents came from and the manner in which they actually came to possess them.

If he sticks to the story of MLB unknowingly purchasing stolen medical documents and records and the timeline of evidence doesn’t match up with his statements, then that would spell serious legal troubles for all involved on MLB’s end.

According to Section 210 of the New York Penal Code, perjury in its most basic form is when a person “swears falsely” and swearing falsely is defined as when a person makes a false statement that is known or believed to be untrue while giving testimony or is under oath. The penalty for committing the crime of perjury varies and is often dependent on the context in which a false statement was given, the type of case being investigated, and of course the setting in which the false statement(s) was being made.

The varying degrees of punishment range from a $1,000 fine and/or up to one year in prison, for the lowest form of the offense, all the way up to a $5,000 fine and/or between three and seven years in prison for the highest degree of the offense.

While the fine is certainly inconsequential to MLB leaders, the investigators, and of course the Commissioner of Baseball himself, the potential prison time wouldn’t be. Even if those involved, if it were to be found out they lied to investigators and knowingly gave false statements, were to avoid prison time the stain on their legacies – specifically that of Bud Selig – would be everlasting and would have the exact opposite effect of what was initially desired when this witch hunt began. 


 

Comments (1)



  • Anonymous   Dec 7, 2013 @ 03:36PM
    Stay on this story. There's more to it. -

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