Categorized | People

Barry Bonds Record Home Run Hitter and Alleged Steroid Abuser and Denier

On November 15, 2007, Bonds was indicted on federal charges and faces four counts of perjury and one count of obstruction of justice. We know Bonds denied that he ever took steroids, we know trainer Greg Anderson plead guilty to conspiracy to distribute steroids and to money laundering while distributing steroids to other players, and we know Greg Anderson was released from prison the same day (November 15) that Barry Bonds was indicted.

In 2003, Bonds was a key character in a scandal when trainer Greg Anderson of the Bay Area Laboratory Co-operative (BALCO), Bonds’ trainer since 2000, was indicted by a federal grand jury in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California and charged with supplying anabolic steroids to athletes, including a number of baseball players. Anderson refused to testify and was found in contempt of court on July 5, 2006 for refusing to testify before a grand jury investigating perjury charges against Barry Bonds.  Anderson was released when the grand jury’s term expired without indicting Bonds. He was immediately subpoenaed for a new case and was again found in contempt of court and sentenced to prison on August 28, 2006. On November 15th, 2007, a federal judge ordered his release. The same day Barry Bonds was indicted on 4 counts of perjury and one count of obstruction of justice.

Bond’s association with Anderson led to speculation that Bonds had used performance-enhancing drugs during a time when there was no mandatory testing in Major League Baseball. Bonds declared his innocence, attributing his changed physique and increased power to a strict regimen of bodybuilding, diet and legitimate supplements.

During grand jury testimony on December 4, 2003 — which was later found to be obtained through an illegal leak to the San Francisco Chronicle by Troy Ellerman, a defense lawyer for Victor Conte,  founder and president of Bay Area Laboratory Co-operative (BALCO), a controversial sports nutrition center in Burlingame, California. The United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) says BALCO developed the banned steroid tetrahydrogestrinone (THG) with bodybuilding chemist Patrick Arnold. The leak was published almost a year later, on December 3, 2004. Leaking a grand jury testimony is a felony, to which Ellerman pleaded guilty to on February 14, 2007. In the leak Bonds said Anderson gave him a rubbing balm and a liquid substance that Anderson said was arthritis cream and flaxseed oil, respectively. The prosecutors contended that what Bonds was actually given was “the cream” and “the clear”, which are both forms of the designer steroid THG.

In August 2005, all four defendants in the BALCO steroid scandal trial, including Anderson, struck deals with federal prosecutors that did not require them to reveal names of athletes who may have used banned drugs.

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