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Shohei Ohtani’s former translator Ippei Mizuhara turns self in

Washington, Apr 12 (Prensa Latina) Ippei Mizuhara, Shohei Ohtani's former interpreter, is in federal custody after voluntarily surrendering to police friday, one day after being charged with stealing more than $16 million over two years from the LA Dodgers superstar to pay off gambling debts to an illegal sportsbook.

Mizuhara, 39, was taken into federal custody Friday and was expected to make an initial court appearance in Los Angeles.

Federal authorities filed a complaint accusing Mizuhara of bank fraud, which can carry a maximum fine of up to $1 million and/or up to 30 years in prison, according to federal sentencing guidelines.

U.S. Attorney Martin Estrada said Thursday that there is no evidence Ohtani had any knowledge of Mizuhara’s gambling activities or use of his bank account to pay his debts.

Mizuhara committed fraud on a massive scale, he stressed.

“I want to emphasize this point: Mr. Ohtani is considered a victim in this case,” Estrada said.

A spreadsheet of Mizuhara’s gambling records “reflect approximately 19,000 wagers between December 2021 and January 2024, and nearly 25 bets per day on average,” according to a criminal complaint written by an IRS special agent.

During that time period, records show Mizuhara’s “total winning bets of $142,256,769.74, and total losing bets of $182,935,206.68, leaving a total net balance of negative $40,678,436.94,” the complaint says.

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