An ESPN report that said Major League Baseball's purchase of Biogenesis files impeded the investigation of a Florida state agency confirms that MLB's investigators "knowingly purchased stolen documents," according to one of Alex Rodriguez's attorneys, Jordan Siev.
ESPN's "Outside the Lines" reported Friday that the files, which have since been offered as evidence by MLB in Rodriguez's ongoing appeal of his 211-game suspension, were key to the Florida Department of Health's probe of Biogenesis founder Anthony Bosch. The report cited a source saying MLB had been warned by the agency that the files likely were stolen. MLB reportedly paid former Biogenesis employee Gary Jones $125,000 for the documents.
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MLB says Rodriguez received performance-enhancing drugs from Bosch and Biogenesis.
Siev said in a statement that the ESPN report "confirms what Mr. Rodriguez alleged in his lawsuit against MLB and commissioner [Bud] Selig over a month ago -- that MLB investigators knowingly purchased stolen documents in their quest to allow commissioner Selig to act, for the first time, as if he was tough on PED use in baseball despite striking a cooperation deal with Anthony Bosch, who MLB knows is under federal investigation for providing steroids to minors.
"MLB's and commissioner Selig's arrogance seemingly knows no bounds, as they believed their investigation took precedence over a Florida State Department of Health investigation. Apparently, the tactics of MLB's investigative unit have gone so far over the line that even 'an MLB official' is quoted in the article as acknowledging that Gary Jones and [Biogenesis whistle-blower] Porter Fischer 'staged' a break-in of Mr. Fischer's car in order to get MLB the stolen documents it wanted. MLB may believe that its investigations trump state and federal laws which they have broken, and a Department of Health investigation which they have impeded, but we suspect that the club owners who pay the salaries of the MLB officials and the parents of the children who allegedly got steroids from Mr. Bosch would disagree."
MLB responded to ESPN's report with a statement: "The truth continues to be that we did not knowingly purchase stolen documents and there is an active police investigation to determine if the documents were in fact stolen."
The report said Bosch was fined $5,000, which was reduced to $3,000. He also agreed not to practice medicine by signing a cease-and-desist letter.
"The Florida Department of Health was able to complete its investigation and took the appropriate action allowed by law against Mr. Bosch," communications director Nathan Dunn said in a statement.
Rodriguez's appeal is scheduled to resume Monday and he is expected to be in attendance. His lawyers did not say if he will testify.