United States v. Bonds

580 F. Supp. 2d 925 (2008)

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United States v. Bonds

United States District Court for the Northern District of California
580 F. Supp. 2d 925 (2008)

Facts

Bonds (defendant) was a retired Major League Baseball player who set many records and won many awards. His trainer was indicted for supplying anabolic steroids to professional athletes. When Bonds testified before the grand jury, he denied that his trainer ever gave him steroids and claimed that a nutritional supplement and a rubbing balm were the only substances he received from his trainer. The trainer and others began cooperating with the government (plaintiff). Bonds was indicted for multiple counts of perjury and obstruction of justice. The second count charged that Bonds gave false answers in response to questioning about a list indicating that he had tested positive for two anabolic steroids in November 2000. The questioner asked Bonds if, in the “weeks and months leading up to November 2000,” he was taking steroids or “anything like that.” Bonds responded that he was not and that he had never seen the list being shown to him. Count 14 alleged that Bonds was asked whether he was getting “flaxseed oil stuff” during January 2002, and Bonds responded not that he could recall, that he could be wrong, and that he was going from his recollection that it was “in the 2002 time and 2003 season.” Bonds moved to dismiss counts two and 14, among other counts, on the ground that the questions underlying those counts were fundamentally ambiguous.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Illston, J.)

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