Shohei Ohtani #17 of the Los Angeles Dodgers and interpreter Ippei Mizuhara arrive to a game against the Chicago White Sox at Camelback Ranch on Feb. 27 in Glendale, Arizona. AFP-Yonhap

Japanese baseball great Shohei Ohtani’s former interpreter has agreed to plead guilty to federal charges he fraudulently wired nearly $17 million stolen from the athlete’s bank account to pay off his own gambling debts, court records showed on Wednesday.The plea agreement between federal prosecutors and Ippei Mizuhara, the onetime translator and de facto manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers’ power-hitting pitcher, was announced by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in L.A., where the case was first brought last month.A 33-page record of the deal, in which Mizuhara, 39, agreed to plead guilty to one count of felony bank fraud and one count of subscribing to a false tax return, was filed on Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles.

A federal bank fraud conviction carries a statutory maximum sentence of 30 years in prison, with the tax offense punishable by up to three years behind bars. The tax charge was added to the case in conjunction with the plea deal.Mizuhara is due to appear at a formal arraignment before a U.S. magistrate on May 14. He would likely enter his plea at a subsequent hearing before a federal district judge and be sentenced sometime after that, according to a U.S. attorney spokesperson.In the meantime, Mizuhara remains free on $25,000 bond on condition he complies with a judge’s order last month requiring him to undergo gambling addiction treatment and refrain from any contact with bookmakers, gambling establishments or Ohtani.Mizuhara was accused of embezzling nearly $17 million from a bank account of Ohtani’s that Mizuhara had helped open in Phoenix in 2018, and transferring the funds without the ballplayer’s knowledge 메이저 to an illegal bookmaking operation to cover Mizuhara’s gambling debts.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *