Clinton Portis successfully evade many a tackle on the NFL gridiron. But he was unable to do so on the playing field of the US justice system.
After pleading guilty this past September to defrauding the NFL healthcare benefit program for league veterans, the former All-Pro running back was sentenced to six months in jail.
At the time of the plea, Portis faced a 10-year sentence and a fine of $250,000 for illegally receiving $99,264 in improper benefits from the Gene Upshaw NFL Players Health Reimbursement Account. Prosecutors sought a sentence of 10 – 16 months, so Portis’ final sentence has to be viewed with a sense of relief for the disgraced, 40-year-old former star.
Portis’ team filed a memorandum on December 30th requesting time served. They also noted that some of his other fellow defendants, such as Carlos Rodgers and Joe Horn, avoided jail time despite their role in the scheme. His team noted he had young children, including four-month-old infant twins.
Portis also received letters of support from former players such as Edgerrin James and Takeo Spikes as well as Washington Football Team owners Daniel and Tanya Snyder.
“(We) were shocked when Clinton was indicted,” wrote the Snyders. “(not) because Clinton got wrapped up in something where others did not have his best interest in mind, but because Clinton is the opposite of a criminal. We support Clinton fully. He has told us how deeply he regrets getting involved in what he should have known was not legitimate. And he has suffered deeply for it.”
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