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Barry Bonds will avoid home confinement pending appeal

December 16, 2011 | 12:33 pm

Photo: Former baseball player Barry Bonds waves as he leaves federal court Friday after being sentenced for obstructing justice in a government steroids investigation. Credit: Noah Berger / Associated PressBarry Bonds' home-confinement-and-probation sentence, handed down for his obstruction-of-justice conviction, was stayed by the judge in the case, pending an appeal by baseball's home run king.

Bonds, 47, was sentenced Friday to two years' probation, 250 hours of community service, 30 days of home confinement, and was ordered to pay a $4,000 fine. But U.S. District Judge Susan Illston immediately stayed the sentence.

The former San Francisco Giants star was convicted last April of one count of obstruction of justice for giving evasive testimony to a federal grand jury eight years ago during an investigation of doping in sports.

PHOTOS: Barry Bonds through the years

Bonds was charged with several counts of perjury and obstruction of justice for lying during the grand jury's probe of the Burlingame, Calif.-based Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative, or BALCO, which sold banned substances to athletes.

The trial jury deadlocked on the perjury charges.

Federal sentencing guidelines recommend 15 to 21 months in prison for obstruction, but probation officials told Illston that Bonds' offense warranted much less.

Probation officials cited Bonds' history of charitable and civic works -- works that Bonds' attorneys said he kept private even though they would have enhanced his reputation.

Prosecutors countered that Bonds deserved 15 months in prison for his "pervasive efforts to testify falsely, to mislead the grand jury, to dodge questions, and to simply refuse to answer questions in the grand jury."

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-- Maura Dolan in San Francisco

Photo: Former baseball player Barry Bonds waves as he leaves federal court Friday after being sentenced for obstructing justice in a government steroids investigation. Credit: Noah Berger / Associated Press

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