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Sunday, July 14, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Barry Bonds Faces Fewer Charges for Steroid Use

(CN) - Federal prosecutors halved the number of charges filed against former San Francisco Giants star Barry Bonds for his alleged use of performance-enhancement drugs. If convicted, each count carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Bonds, a former outfielder who holds the Major League Baseball record for 762 career home runs, must re-enter his plea in the case because the new indictment cut the number of counts in the case from 11 to five. Bonds now faces four counts of false declaration before a grand jury and one count of obstruction of justice. He is due in court to be arraigned on March 1 and is expected to plead not guilty, the same plea he entered in the original charges.

The indictment, which was filed in the Northern District of California Criminal Division, states that Bonds' 2003 testimony before a grand jury was found to be untruthful during a subsequent criminal investigation into Balco Laboratories and Greg Anderson, a personal athletic trainer whose client roster included Bonds. According to the indictment, Anderson "obtained illegal drugs for later distribution to his clients" through Balco, and investigators in the case have "obtained evidence that Bonds had a relationship with Anderson and Balco."

The indictment also says that during the investigation into Balco and Anderson, evidence was obtained against Bonds "including a positive test for the presence of anabolic steroids and other performance-enhancing substances for Bonds."

The indictment says this evidence contradicts several statements Bonds gave in 2003 before a grand jury. One example mentioned in the indictment states that an investigator asked Bonds if he had ever taken steroids that Anderson gave him, and Bonds replied, "Not that I know of." Bonds also stated, "No," when asked if anyone else besides a team doctor injected him with anything, when asked if Anderson gave him anything to take besides vitamins, and when asked if Anderson ever gave him anything that he understood to be human growth hormone.

Greg Anderson's lawyer, Mark Geragos, has stated throughout the indictments that his client will not testify in the trial. Bond's perjury trial is scheduled to start March 21.

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