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Bonds pleads not guilty to all charges

bonds.jpg

Now here’s another hit, Barry Bonds…we outta here baby…and soon Bonds may be outta the majors…”

Courtesy of The Associated Press
Surrounded by lawyers while fans chanted his name, Barry Bonds left court Friday after pleading not guilty to charges he lied to federal investigators about using performance-enhancing drugs.

The home run king was arraigned in U.S. District Court on four counts of perjury and one of obstruction of justice stemming from a Nov. 15 indictment. If convicted, he could spend more than two years in prison.

Bonds appeared relaxed as he smiled and chatted with his cadre of six attorneys. He then stood before the judge with his hands clasped behind his back and said: “I’m Barry Bonds.”

Newly hired defense attorney Allen Ruby entered the plea on Bonds’ behalf.

“Barry Bonds is innocent,” Ruby said after the hearing. “He has trust and faith in the judicial system.”

Ruby also said he soon would ask a judge to toss out the case against Bonds because of “defects” in the indictment. He declined to elaborate.

A judge declined the government’s demand that Bonds turn over his passport and restrict his travel to within the United States. Ruby said such a restriction would interfere with his job as a Major League Baseball player. Bonds, a free agent after parting ways with the San Francisco Giants at the end of the 2007 season, hopes to play for a new team in 2008.

Bonds, who made nearly $20 million last year, was released without having to post any money. If he violates any terms of his release, including appearing at all required hearings, he’ll be required to forfeit $500,000.

Bonds also had been expected to be booked and have his mug shot taken, but Ruby told the judge that happened Thursday. (more…)

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