BARRY BONDS LIVES on a two-acre estate in Beverly Hills in a house with six bedrooms and 10 bathrooms.
That’s important because he may be spending most of his time there after he is sentenced today for his felony conviction of obstruction of justice.
Federal probation officers are recommending US District Judge Susan Illston sentence Bonds to some form of house arrest and community service rather than the prison term that prosecutors seek. Legal analysts expect Illston to follow most of the probation department’s suggestions and “downward depart” from federal sentencing guidelines calling for 15 months to 21 months in prison when the last of the defendants directly connected to the investigation of the Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative is sentenced today.
A jury convicted Bonds in April of purposely answering questions about steroids with rambling non sequiturs in an attempt to mislead a grand jury investigating sports doping in December 2003. Bonds’ trial jury deadlocked on three other charges accusing Bonds of perjury for allegedly lying when he denied taking performance-enhancing drugs and receiving injections from someone other than his doctor.
Prosecutors in September dropped those deadlocked charges, foregoing another trial.
Prosecutors are asking for a prison sentence of 15 months and note that baseball’s career home runs leader has never accepted responsibility for his actions.
“Bonds’ pervasive efforts to testify falsely, to mislead the grand jury, to dodge questions, and to simply refuse to answer questions in the grand jury makes his conduct worthy of a significant jail sentence,” prosecutors wrote to the court last week.
Bonds will have 14 days to file his intention to appeal his conviction after sentencing.
– Paul Elias