My last post called out Trevor Graham and other coaches like him on the slew of athletes they have had test positive. Just last week, Graham was in court to face several charges related to PEDs. The verdict in the guy’s trial was truly a travesty of justice. Whether you are pro, con, or indifferent on the topic of PEDs in sports, it’s hard to see how the guy could possibly have gotten off for as light a sentence as he did. If you weren’t following the news, the abbreviated recap is that Graham was being tried on three counts of lying to federal investigators. The three charges were that he:
- lied to investigators that he hadn’t spoken to Heredia since 1997;
- lied to investigators about whether he had ever met a known drug dealer, Angel Heredia;
- lie to investigators that he worked with Heredia to supply his elite athletes with PEDs.
The travesty is that Graham was found guilty on only the first count. This one was practically a no-brainer since prosecutors produced phone records documenting more than 100 calls between the two men. The other two counts. BAAAH. The jury found him not guilty DESPITE the prosecution producing pictures of the two men together, and the testimony of several former athletes who described in explicit detail how Graham had supplied them with PEDs.
What you’re probably asking could have been the hold-up? Well, apparently there was the jury foreman. Here’s a quote from the AP:
Jury foreman Frank Stapleton, a 59-year-old small business owner from Oakland, was the lone holdout for conviction on the second count and one of two holdouts on the first. He said he questioned whether Graham’s statements that he had not met Heredia in person were deliberately misleading and could not decide whether it was material to the investigation.
On the first count, Stapleton said he questioned the credibility of almost all government witnesses, but mostly Heredia.
Kinda shocking. In cases such as these, it’s almost a given that the testimony of most witnesses is going to be from people who have a history of shady. Oh well. It’s becoming increasingly clear (at least in the U.S.) that if you’re going to use PEDs you better tell the truth if the government asks (ala Giambi, Kelly White, etc) and if you sell or distribute PEDs, you better tell the truth AND pay your taxes on it.