Share

Ex-Oklahoma State coach to plead guilty in bribery case

Share

NEW YORK (AP) — A former Oklahoma State assistant basketball coach pleaded guilty Wednesday to taking bribes from business advisers to steer them to star college athletes expected to turn pro.

Lamont Evans, 41, entered the plea in New York federal court to conspiring to commit bribery. He admitted receiving $22,000 to steer the players at the University of South Carolina and Oklahoma State University to certain financial advisers and business managers, attorney Johnny McCray said.

Evans also agreed to forfeit the bribe money he received from two financial advisers as part of the deal he signed Thursday.

“I now know that accepting those funds in exchange for introducing them to any one player was wrong and violated the law,” he said.

Sentencing was set for May 10 on a charge that carries the potential for up to five years in prison, though a plea agreement between Evans and prosecutors recommends no more than two years behind bars.

Trending:
FBI Raids Home of Big City Democratic Mayor in Early Hours of the Morning

Judge Edgardo Ramos also warned that he could be deported because he is a citizen of Barbados, though he lives in Florida. He was a resident of Stillwater, Oklahoma, at the time of his arrest.

U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman said in a statement that Evans abused his position as a mentor and coach for personal gain.

“A scheme Evans apparently thought was a slam-dunk actually proved to be a flagrant foul,” he said.

“He accepted responsibility for what happened. He will be making a vigorous appeal for the lowest sentence possible,” attorney Johnny McCray said.

Evans is the third former NCAA assistant coach to plead guilty in the case. The prosecution has revealed how well-connected mentors sometimes paid family members of top-tier athletes to steer the NBA-destined youngsters to schools or managers.

In recent weeks, similar pleas have been entered by former University of Southern California assistant basketball coach Tony Bland and ex-University of Arizona assistant coach Emanuel “Book” Richardson. Both are awaiting sentencing. Former Auburn assistant coach Chuck Person is scheduled for trial in June.

“These guys are scapegoats,” McCray said. “The bigger name coaches were not touched here. It’s really sad.”

He added: “I think this is overkill. They could have used the sanctions available within the NCAA, which has the ability to permanently bar a coach from coaching.”

When arrests were made in September 2017, prosecutors said Evans committed his crime in 2016 and 2017 when he accepted the bribes from a New Jersey-based financial adviser and another person cooperating with the investigators and posing as a business adviser to athletes.

Related:
Three Men Dead After Swimming Under Red Flag Warning at US Beach

They said Evans then falsely touted the services of the men to young athletes and their families, boasting falsely that the man cooperating with law enforcement was “my guy” and “has helped me personally.”

The Western Journal has not reviewed this Associated Press story prior to publication. Therefore, it may contain editorial bias or may in some other way not meet our normal editorial standards. It is provided to our readers as a service from The Western Journal.

Truth and Accuracy

Submit a Correction →



We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.

Tags:
Share
The Associated Press is an independent, not-for-profit news cooperative headquartered in New York City. Their teams in over 100 countries tell the world’s stories, from breaking news to investigative reporting. They provide content and services to help engage audiences worldwide, working with companies of all types, from broadcasters to brands. Photo credit: @AP on Twitter
The Associated Press was the first private sector organization in the U.S. to operate on a national scale. Over the past 170 years, they have been first to inform the world of many of history's most important moments, from the assassination of Abraham Lincoln and the bombing of Pearl Harbor to the fall of the Shah of Iran and the death of Pope John Paul.

Today, they operate in 263 locations in more than 100 countries relaying breaking news, covering war and conflict and producing enterprise reports that tell the world's stories.
Location
New York City




Conversation