The former owner of the clinic at the center of Major League Baseball’s recent performance-enhancing drug scandal had his bail revoked Monday because of recent positive tests for cocaine use.
U.S. District Judge Darrin P. Gayles ordered Anthony Bosch jailed immediately. Bosch tested positive twice in August for cocaine use, after he was released on $100,000 bail under conditions including no use of illegal drugs and random urine testing. Gayles also found Bosch wasn’t regularly attending voluntary drug treatment.
"I simply have no confidence in his ability to appear as required," Gayles said at a hearing.
Prosecutors say Bosch’s Coral Gables clinic, Biogenesis of America, was involved in a conspiracy to provide performance-enhancing drugs to MLB players and even high school athletes. Fourteen MLB players were suspended following the probe, including a season-long suspension this year for New York Yankees star Alex Rodriguez.
Bosch, 51, is scheduled to plead guilty next week and has been cooperating in the investigation against others who were charged, including possibly testifying in those cases. Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael "Pat" Sullivan, however, said authorities were well aware of Bosch’s chronic drug problem and fondness for South Beach nightclubs.
"We knew from our investigation that Mr. Bosch was one who liked to party," Sullivan said.
Bosch attorney Guy Lewis, himself a former Miami U.S. attorney, pointed out that Bosch had not tested positive for cocaine since Aug. 18 and was doing his best to attend a drug treatment program. Lewis denied that Bosch has been frequenting nightclubs and said that he is living up to his cooperation agreement with prosecutors.
"I can tell you he’s not out on South Beach," Lewis said. "The last thing he’s doing is out being notorious in South Florida. He has a drug problem, though. He is addressing it."
Although Sullivan did not ask for Bosch’s bail to be revoked, Gayles refused to simply place Bosch under a curfew or order more frequent urine testing. Gayles also was unmoved by Lewis’ comment that Bosch was under a great deal of pressure and was the subject of death threats.
"The pressure on the defendant, I don’t find a mitigating factor," the judge said. "I don’t find that he’s a good candidate to remain out on bond."
Bosch is charged with conspiracy to distribute testosterone, which carries a maximum 10-year prison sentence. Despite the bail revocation, however, Bosch is likely to eventually receive a lighter sentence because of his cooperation with prosecutors.
Six other people have been charged in the case, although no athletes have been prosecuted so far.
MLB previously sued Bosch and his clinic but withdrew the lawsuit in February. The league had accused Bosch and others with conspiring to violate player contracts by providing them with banned substances.
The season-long suspension of Rodriguez was the longest in baseball history related to banned substances. Rodriguez denied taking illegal substances while with the Yankees, but did admit doing so earlier in his career with the Texas Rangers.
Yankees manager Joe Girardi said at the end of this season that the team expects Rodriguez back to play third base next year if he is up to it physically. Rodriguez, a three-time American League MVP, turns 40 in July.