Ex-Dodger Yasiel Puig agrees to plead guilty to lying to federal agents – Orange County Register

LOS ANGELES – Former Dodger Yasiel Puig has agreed to plead guilty to a federal charge of lying to federal officials about bets on sporting events that he placed at an illegal gamble, according to court documents unsealed today.

Puig, 31, who currently plays professional baseball in South Korea, has agreed to plead guilty to a count of misrepresentation, a crime that US Attorneys say carries a penalty of up to five years in federal prison will be punished.

Puig, who also played for two other Major League Baseball franchises, is expected to appear in federal court in Los Angeles on Tuesday.

“No one is above the law in our justice system,” US Attorney Martin Estrada said in a statement. “The integrity of our nation’s criminal justice system depends on people speaking the truth, and those who fail to live by this simple principle face consequences.”

Per his plea agreement, in May 2019, Puig began placing bets on games through an unidentified man working on behalf of an illegal gambling business run by Wayne Nix, 46, of Newport Coast.

Within a month, Puig’s losses totaled $282,900, according to the defense agreement.

In January 2022, federal investigators questioned Puig in the presence of his attorney. During the interview, despite being warned that lying by federal agents is a crime, Puig lied several times, including when he said that according to US prosecutors, he never discussed gambling with the bookie.

In fact, Puig spoke to the man hundreds of times on the phone and via SMS about sports betting, the federal prosecutor said.

Nix pleaded guilty in April to conspiring to operate an illegal sports gambling business and filing false tax returns. His sentencing hearing is scheduled for March 8.

Federal prosecutors also on Monday filed a plea agreement for Panorama City’s former MLB player Erik Kristian Hiljus, 49, who agreed to plead guilty to two counts of subscribing to false tax returns and imprisoning him when he was up to six years old Federal prison will face confession. Hiljus was an agent for Nix’s illegal gambling business but did not work with Puig.

https://www.ocregister.com/2022/11/14/ex-dodger-yasiel-puig-agrees-to-plead-guilty-to-lying-to-federal-agents/ Ex-Dodger Yasiel Puig agrees to plead guilty to lying to federal agents – Orange County Register

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