A former official of the Mets, a leading baseball team of New York, has pleaded guilty yesterday in federal court in San Francisco to distributing performance-enhancing drugs to dozens of former and current Major League Baseball players for a decade.
Kirk Radomski, 37, who had worked as a clubhouse assistant for the Mets from 1985-95, admitted to selling banned drugs, including anabolic steroids, amphetamines and human growth hormone, from 1995 through 2005, according to a plea agreement filed in the United States District Court in the Northern District of California.
He also pleaded guilty to laundering the money from the drug transactions. The two felony charges carry sentences of up to 25 years in prison and a maximum of 500,000 dollars in fines. None of his clients were named in the plea agreement.
Allan Huber 'Bud' Selig, a senior official of the Major League Baseball, the virtual apex body of professional baseball in the US, told a Congressional committee that the steroid problem in baseball had been blown out of proportion.
'Do we have a major problem? No,' he said.
Radomski said in his statement, 'I had personal contact with some of my baseball drug clients, but consulted and conducted drug transactions with others over the telephone and mail.'
When his home was searched in December 2005 federal agents seized 'thousands of doses of numerous types of anabolic steroids in both pill and injectable form - human growth hormone, insulin growth factor, clomiphene, a fertility drug that can be used as a masking agent, steroid Clenbuterol, to name some of them.
Federal agents also seized shipping records, financial records, correspondences and contact lists that detailed the distribution of drugs to major league baseball players.
Major League Baseball issued a statement saying it supported 'the efforts of the U.S. attorney's office in combating the illegal use of performance-enhancing substances.'
The Mets issued a statement saying the team was 'disappointed' to hear about the guilty plea and that 'the conduct in question is diametrically opposed to the values and standards of the Mets organization and our owners.'