Roger Clemens and Lying to the Feds

Roger Clemens taught us another important lesson in dealing with an investigation. Never lie to the feds.

Mark McGwire essentially proclaimed his guilt when he refused to answer questions about steroid use during his playing career at a congressional hearing. He may have lost in the arena of public opinion, but he will not have to continue in the courtroom arena.

Mr. Clemens said the following, under oath, at a Congressional hearing:

  • “I have not used steroids of human growth hormone.”
  • “I am just making it as perfectly clear as I can, I haven’t done steroids or growth hormone.”
  • “I never used steroids. Never performance-enhancing steroids.”

Instead of having to prove that Roger Clemens illegally took steroids, they just need to prove that he took steroids.

Martha Stewart was never convicted of insider trading. She was convicted of perjury lying to federal investigators. She lied about the circumstances of her trades.They did not have enough evidence to prove insider trading. But they did have enough lies to convict her of perjury.

Roger will now need to worry about trading his Yankees pinstripes for jail stripes. It’s probably going to be tough to get that Baseball Hall of Fame vote while being under federal indictment. Clemens is eligible to be placed on the ballot in 2012. He may need to be more worried about being eligible for parole.


Image of Roger Clemens is by Keith Allison

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5 Responses to Roger Clemens and Lying to the Feds

  1. Dan Schwartz August 23, 2010 at 8:22 am #

    As a Yankees fan, I find it ironic that you would post a picture of Clemens as a Yankee. He will, in my mind, always be a Red Sox player (just like Wade Boggs) and given that he played 13 season for the Sox (and just 6 for the Yankees), he would likely go into the HOF as a Sox (not that he’s got a chance for HOF right now).

    But your main point is well taken — rather than admitting the truth, he’s just made it worse.

    • Doug Cornelius August 23, 2010 at 9:51 am #

      I was also contemplating a Blue Jays picture for Roger. In those two seasons, he put up some of his best numbers. Was his fountain of youth (1) anger for being considered washed-up or (2) steroids?

      In the end, copyright won. It was easy to find a Yankees picture released under creative commons than a Red Sox picture.

      • Dan Schwartz August 23, 2010 at 10:51 am #

        Until he comes clean, his turnaround from his last mediocre Sox year will now be a question mark.

        Ultimately, I believe Andy Petitte who implicated Clemens — a good friend. As Petitte has learned, we can forgive much easier when you just come clean. Coverup is always worse than the crime.

  2. Tom Kirkendall August 23, 2010 at 8:59 am #

    IIRC, Ms. Stewart was not convicted of perjury. Rather, she was convicted of conspiracy, obstruction of justice and making false statements to federal investigators. In short, the government convicted her of asserting her innocence in unsworn statements to investigators of a crime (insider trading) that the government could not prove. What a travesty.

    • Doug Cornelius August 23, 2010 at 9:54 am #

      Thanks for the clarification. (I updated the post.)