Friday, August 17, 2007
Donaghy to share info about other refs with feds
ESPN.com news services
Former NBA official Tim Donaghy will reportedly give federal prosecutors information that will implicate other referees in some forms of gambling activity as part of his cooperation with government officials.
The offenses might not include any criminal activity, but could draw the ire of NBA commissioner David Stern, who has insisted the Donaghy situation was that of a "rogue, isolated criminal."
A report on 1050 ESPN Radio in New York said Donaghy will give prosecutors as many as 20 names of other NBA officials and will detail their involvement in some form of gambling activity. The specifics of the gambling allegations are reportedly believed to include betting in casinos.
"As far as we know, the misconduct was isolated to one individual, and we'll stand by that until proven otherwise," National Basketball Referees Association director Lamell McMorris told ESPN.com's Chris Sheridan. "We'll review whatever information Tim Donaghy alleges, but as far as we're concerned, the only person whose conduct has been proven wrong is Tim Donaghy. We're dealing with truth, not hearsay, and the truth is that the only person who has pleaded guilty to any kind of wrongdoing is Tim Donaghy."
NBA spokesman Brian McIntyre said the league had received no information regarding the possibility of other officials being investigated.
On Friday, Donaghy spoke to the New York Daily News.
"I'm very sorry about what happened," he said outside his home. "I'm not going to say anything beyond that. This is an ongoing case -- I can't say anything else."
The NBA's collective bargaining agreement with the officials bans gambling by referees, although there is one exception -- officials are allowed to go to the racetrack and bet on horses during the offseason.
Donaghy, who pleaded guilty on Thursday and was released on $250,000 bond, faces a maximum of 25 years in prison when he is sentenced Nov. 9 for conspiracy to engage in wire fraud and transmitting betting information through interstate commerce. He also must pay a $500,000 fine and at least $30,000 in restitution to the government.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.