Dodgers Interpreter Charged with Bank Fraud in Alleged Theft from Shohei Ohtani’s Account

Dodgers Interpreter Charged with Bank Fraud in Alleged Theft from Shohei Ohtani’s Account

Los Angeles, California – Ippei Mizuhara, a former interpreter for the Los Angeles Dodgers, has been charged with bank fraud following allegations of stealing funds from Shohei Ohtani’s account. The charges were filed in response to Ohtani’s public statement accusing Mizuhara of theft and deception.

According to a federal criminal complaint, Mizuhara sent a message to his bookie on March 20, asking if he had seen the reports about the allegations. The bookie responded, dismissing the claims as “bullshit” and understanding it as a cover-up. Mizuhara admitted to technically stealing from Ohtani, indicating his awareness of the situation.

The complaint further revealed that Mizuhara had lost $40 million through approximately 19,000 bets between December 2021 and January 2024. However, there was no evidence of any bets placed on baseball games. MGM, DraftKings, and FanDuel confirmed records of Mizuhara’s gambling activities but found no such records for Ohtani.

On March 21, federal agents intercepted Mizuhara at Los Angeles International Airport and seized his phone. Mizuhara consented to the search, providing investigators with access to his phone. Ohtani also cooperated with authorities, granting consent to search his phone and meeting with investigators on April 2 and 3.

The Los Angeles Dodgers fired Mizuhara before Major League Baseball (MLB) announced an investigation into the allegations. The league is currently waiting for the resolution of the criminal proceedings to determine if further investigation or disciplinary action is necessary.

U.S. Attorney E. Martin Estrada stated that Ohtani is considered a victim in this case, and there is no evidence to suggest he authorized betting with an illegal bookmaker. The investigation did not uncover any evidence of Mizuhara betting on baseball games.

If the case proceeds to trial, Ohtani would likely serve as the star witness. Mizuhara faces a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison, but his cooperation in the investigation could potentially lead to a plea bargain and a lighter sentence.

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Special Agent Chris Seymour, who reviewed thousands of text messages between Ohtani and Mizuhara, found no discussion of sports betting. Seymour also deemed Mizuhara’s statements regarding Ohtani’s awareness of his gambling activities as not credible. Mizuhara had falsely represented himself as Ohtani on multiple occasions to gain access to the player’s private bank account.

The Dodgers’ superstar’s representatives had accused Mizuhara of engaging in a “massive theft” from Ohtani’s bank account to place bets with an alleged illegal bookmaker. The investigation and subsequent charges have shed light on the alleged fraudulent activities involving Mizuhara and Ohtani’s finances.

CrimeDoor
Author: CrimeDoor

1 Response

  1. This is absolutely outrageous and despicable! How could someone entrusted with such an important role as an interpreter stoop so low and commit bank fraud? It’s not just the act of stealing funds from Shohei Ohtani’s account, but the betrayal of trust that is truly infuriating.

    Shohei Ohtani is a talented athlete who has worked hard to achieve his success, and to have someone take advantage of him in this way is beyond comprehension. It’s bad enough that athletes have to

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