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Barry Bonds convicted of obstruction of justice in performance-enhancing-drugs case

Barry Bonds

After a government prosecution that lasted nearly seven years, a federal jury Wednesday convicted home-run king Barry Bonds on one charge of obstruction of justice for impeding a grand jury investigation into illegal steroid distribution.

The judge in the case declared a mistrial on three remaining counts.

Bonds was charged with four federal felony counts for denying under oath to a grand jury in 2003 that he had knowingly used steroids or human growth hormones and for maintaining that his personal trainer, Greg Anderson, had never injected him.

The probe that ensnared Bonds began with an investigation of a Bay Area laboratory that was selling illegal performance-enhancing drugs to professional athletes, and expanded to include athletes who lied to investigators. Bonds, holder of major-league baseball's hallowed record for most home runs, was the probe's highest-profile quarry.

Prosecutors said Bonds lied repeatedly to a grand jury to protect his reputation. Defense attorneys charged the government had a vendetta against Bonds and used lying witnesses to try to convict him.

Authorities first became interested in Bonds in the early 2000s after learning that the San Francisco Giants superstar had appeared in an advertisement for the Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative, which was authorities said was selling designer steroids and other drugs to professional athletes.

Bonds was one of 30 athletes summoned before the grand jury that was investigating the lab. Although given immunity in connection with illegal drug use, Bonds insisted that his trainer told him the two steroids he was taking were flaxseed oil and arthritis cream.

Prosecutors presented evidence that Bonds tested positive for a steroid and a fertility drug in a urine sample taken several months before his grand jury evidence. They also gave the jury a surreptitious recording of Anderson discussing how he injected steroids in response to a question about Bonds.

Anderson refused to testify in the trial and was jailed for its duration. He has spent nearly two years behind bars, mostly because he would not cooperate with the investigation of Bonds.

Jurors heard three key prosecution witnesses: Steve Hoskins, a childhood friend who was close to Bonds for 10 years until the two had a falling-out in early 2003; Kimberly Bell, Bonds' girlfriend of nine years; and Kathy Hoskins, Steve's younger sister, who said she was packing Bonds' clothes for a road trip when she saw Anderson inject the ballplayer.

Prosecutors also presented four former major-league players who testified that Anderson supplied them with drugs that they said they knew were designed to boost performance and escape detection.

Each count against Bonds carried a possible maximum sentence of 10 years, but federal sentencing guidelines recommend 15 to 21 months in prison for a conviction.

RELATED:

Bonds' personal trainer ordered released from jail

Bonds' lawyer says slugger was 'set up' by prosecutors

Bonds lied about steroid use to protect his athletic exploits, prosecutor says

-- Maura Dolan in San Francisco

Photo: Barry Bonds enters federal court in San Francisco on Wednesday. Credit: Monica M. Davey / EPA

 
Comments () | Archives (77)

So, should Bonds records feature an asterisk and he be banned from the HOF because he took steroids or because he lied about it? Does the fact that it was de rigeur in MLB matter? Should ALL records from the so-called steroid era be disregarded or stricken? Or should it be selective? Should McGuire get in? ARod? That's the problem with hypocrisy- you can't get around the real world and facts, only refuse to look in the mirror and see your own failings. SO WHAT IF HE LIED ABOUT TAKING STEROIDS. Who wouldn't.

Baseball was never better than the immediate years after the strike when there were foam bats, juiced balls, and juiced bodies on the field.

Who cares everyone else was doing it too.

To all those who think it's a waste of our tax dollars: yes, definitely it is.

But that is the price of equal justice for all. Do you really want a system in which anyone with 10 or 50 or 100 million bucks in the bank can buy his way out of being punished for crimes?

Do you really think the Obama Administration should have just turned its back and let all those Wall Street crooks get away with stealing from the rest of us and wrecking the economy? Aren't you glad that they, despite their millions of bucks and armies of lobbyists, are being prosecuted?

What? What's that you say? They aren't? We spent millions going after Bonds instead for lying about bulking up?

Oops.

Its only baseball, who cares! It's not like he was the only MLB player using PEDs.

Steroids weren't just invented in 2000. Who's to say Hank Arron wasn't using roids or Pete Rose, Tony Gwynn or fill in the blank. Google streoids.

As Romey said: If you ain't cheating, you ain't trying. And it's only cheating, if you get caught.

Seven years and millions of dollars later and all the Feds got was one conviction with mistrials declared on the others charges? A less than impressive outcome for the prosecution.

Another phony record ill gotten with drugs.

I am curious,why didn't you report each of the alleged lies and identify for which one he was convicted. If he was convicted of lying when he said no one other than a doctor gave me an injection, exactly how does this prove that he was using steroids? If he was aquited of lying when he said he never took steroids, then that underscores the fact that there was not evidence beyond a reasonable doubt that he took steroids. Yet your sloppiness convicts him of that offense.

The practice in modern journalism to ignore the relevant facts that would enable readers to exercise some judgment is wide spread and deplorable.

Barry=*Convicted Felon*

The greatest basball player to ever play the game, juiced or not PERIOD.
But I will sleep better and will feel much safer knowning that "hardened" criminal felon is off the streets. What a waste of time and money. For what.......to say see I told you so.

And while we're at it, let's make the 1989 A's, powered by juiced-up "Bash Brothers" Canseco and McGuire, forfeit the World Series trophy.

Okay there's some gomer on here who thinks Greg anderson has personal integrity? Shooting Bonds up with steroids -- you know, drugs that aren't allowed in baseball in order that he might cheat is the hallmark of integrity--Greg should have turned him in. Baseball is bigger than Barry Bonds no matter what Barry says. He's a loser. Weak. But there will be men and boys who glom onto him like they did O.J., it doesn't matter to brainless brawn what athletes do..morals and integrity mean nothing.

but I did want to say that I am thankful for one that Bobby Bonds is not alive to see his son today. Bobby was a class act and not one tenth as arrogant as Barry. Bonds' first at-bat in the Majors was a homerun against the Dodgers. He played the game with honesty and verve. Barry is a poor substitute.

Anyone trying to make a villain of Bonds on this board is just out of their element... I've seen people posting "they hope he rots in jail." Really? That's how pathetic your life is? I mean, he may not be the greatest guy in the world, but nearly everyone in that age of baseball was using something. It was the only way they could keep up. AND MLB knew it the whole time and loved it. WHY? Because it brought baseball back from the brink of extinction... This is on Selig. He's the bum in all of this. The players were just keeping up. He knew what was going on.

and please the word is THEIR not THERE - can you guys pretend you had an education when you post on here?

If Bonds was convicted, how is it that the SF Chronicle sportwriters, who illegally acquired leaked grand jury testimony, published it in a book (Game of Shadows) and made alot of money, got off scott free? Something is not right with this.

As to how race played a part, didn't know soon to be possible felons Roger Clemens and Lance Armstrong were brothers. Live and learn.

Isn't grand jury testimony supposed to be confidential? The guy who leaked the testimony was convicted, but the reporters (Mark Fainaru-Wade and Lance Williams) who made a small fortune by revealing the testimony to the world walk away scott-free. If Bonds lied he deserves some punishment (although the lengths the prosecutors went to is ridiculous), but why do reporters continue to be immune from situations like this one? If they testified before a grand jury, would they want their statements published worldwide?

Glad to see they got their pound of flesh. Nowadays, this is about as high up the wealth food chain as the government is willing to go. If he were part owner of the club, they never would have touched him. Now they need to go after some fans for jaywalking; make them do hard time.

Can't the federal court sue Bonds for the costs associated with the trial? It's sad that the gov can spend so much money on behalf of this nastily rich man and he's not liable for it.

G- U- I- L- T- Y and deservedly so. Now, re-try him on the others and nail him on them. Do it for the children & too for The Babe, Maris, Hank and the guys who did it on their own sans medicinal assist.

Now that he has been PROVEN a cheat 'on the field', let us revisit how short he fell majesty was the Sultan of Swat: Babe Ruth.

Ruth hit 714 hrs 8399 career abs...Bonds* even 'with' steroids hit but 619 his first 8399; the SF Cheat needed an extra 836 abs beyond or 9235 to even 'tie' Ruth; on 9236, he finally managed hit 715. Put another he needed 837 'extra' abs - the equivalent almost two extra MLB seasons.

That at a similar point of opportunity Ruth was better than Bonds* across the board (had more walks, less strikeouts, higher batting average, higher slug %, higher - well, you get it - and now augmented a deliverance justice courtroom, pleases me no end. Ruth, Aaron, Mays, Maris et al by decree reinvigorated, indeed a wonderful turn of events.

To be fair, Aaron had only 493 hrs his first 8399 abs & needed 3965 more to end his career just 41 hrs beyond a Ruth. To be fair to Hank & Ruth all their hrs were legit. Maris too, his 61 single season still the record the minds most baseball purists (even here when he hit those 61 needed 50 extra abs beyond what Ruth had when he hit his 60; better ab to hr ratio = Ruth.)

By any measure, Ruth remains the BEST hr hitter MLB history if not most prolific (even McGwire's* slightly better ratio abs/hrs medicinal assist still finished a distant 131 hrs behind Ruth - broken down and unable continue (gee, I wonder why?)

Upshot: Bonds* merely ran past a finish line in a race was already over - won by Ruth years before.

Berry wins! Conviction for obstruction of justice is better than the conviction for the use of steroids.

The funny thing is, he thought he could get way with it. If he cops to it, tells the grand jury the truth, tells baseball the truth, like McGuire, the worst is, he won't be in he HOF. Now, he's a convicted felon with a maybe on prison time. So he was convicted of lying about cheating. He was paid all of those years while he was cheating. He played pumped up against others (some), who weren't. Shouldn't the Giants, Pirates and MLB go after him now. He basically committed fraud all of those years. Next up, Clemens, for lying to congress.

We all can agree that the federal gov. spent alot of money to try Bonds on what we all know is a crock .After all the years of poor baseball ball ratings the homer squad comes along ,you know them we all do the ratings go up .Now here we go we tell our children that it is wrong to lie and you should be punished for doing so ,Anderson Bonds own "personal" trainer spends 2 yrs in jail why because he didn't want to lie.He knew what Bonds had done Bonds knew what he had done but he doesn't care ,there is the problem was it the dollar signs was it ego hell he didn't care about those of us who enjoy baseball the purity of the sport .Ever wonder why he didn't want to talk to reporters LIES LIES if he doesn't speak he can't lie.If the HoF considers him the whole thing is a sham "charlie hustle "should be there before Bonds.

Bonds is guilty. What he did is bad for health and for sports. Imprison him and throw the keys away

 
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