Former NBA Ref Pleads Guilty

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Former NBA referee Tim Donaghy pleaded guilty today to betting on games that he officiated. WNYC's Dan Blumberg reports.

Donaghy turned himself in at a Brooklyn federal court and pleaded guilty to two felony charges -- one for conspiracy and the other for gambling. The judge in the case says Donaghy gave his co-conspirators tips on which teams to bet for and when his tips paid off, they paid him.

The judge says Donaghy had unique access to information that bettors would want, such as which referee crews would officiate at games, the interaction of different officials and players, and whether a player was healthy or banged up.

Donaghy faces a maximum of 25 years in prison, but he's expected to cooperate with federal prosecutors who are trying to figure out who else was involved in the scheme that Commissioner NBA Commissioner David Stern calls the worst situation he's ever seen in basketball. For NPR News, I'm Dan Blumberg in New York.

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