Barry Bonds given March 2011 trial date
Friday, August 6, 2010
08-06) 12:00 PDT SAN FRANCISCOÂ — A federal judge today set a trial date of March 21, 2011 forÂ Barry Bonds, who is charged with perjury for telling a federal grand jury he had never knowingly used steroids on his way to setting baseball’s home-run record.
U.S. District JudgeÂ Susan Illston of San Francisco accepted the schedule proposed by federal prosecutors and lawyers for the formerÂ San Francisco GiantsÂ star. She told both sides to file lists of planned witnesses by Oct. 15.
Bonds, 46, faces 11 felony charges of perjury and obstruction of justice for his 2003 testimony to the grand jury that was investigatingÂ BALCO, the Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative of Burlingame. He has pleaded not guilty.
Five defendants, including BALCO founderÂ Victor ConteÂ and Bonds’ former trainer, Greg Anderson, pleaded guilty to illegally distributing drugs through the lab.
Anderson has refused to testify against Bonds and spent a year in prison for contempt of court. Because of his silence, Illston has barred prosecutors from using what could have been their strongest evidence against Bonds, three positive steroid tests conducted before Bonds appeared before the grand jury.
A federal appeals court upheld Illston’s ruling that without testimony from Anderson, who had arranged the tests, prosecutors had no admissible evidence that the samples came from Bonds.
Prosecutors can still offer testimony from Bonds’ former girlfriend and one of his ex-teammates ), who allegedly said Bonds had admitted using steroids, and of a later drug test arranged byÂ Major League BaseballÂ without Anderson’s involvement.
Bonds testified that Anderson told him he was administering only benign substances such as arthritis balm and flaxseed oil. He also said the trainer never told him he had tested positive for steroids.
E-mail Bob Egelko at :Â firstname.lastname@example.org.