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September sentencing in Cuban baseball player smuggling case


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MIAMI (AP) — A September sentencing date has been set for a sports agent and a baseball trainer convicted in Miami of smuggling Cuban baseball players into the U.S.

Court records show a federal judge has set Sept. 29 for the sentencing of agent Bartolo Hernandez and trainer Julio Estrada, convicted by a jury in March after a six-week trial.

Prosecutors said Hernandez faces up to 15 years in prison and Estrada — convicted of more smuggling counts — faces a maximum of 35 years behind bars.

Trial evidence showed the pair ran an international operation to smuggle Cuban players in return for a cut of their lucrative baseball contracts, including Jose Abreu of the Chicago White Sox, Adeiny Hechavarria of the Tampa Bay Rays and Leonys Martin of the Seattle Mariners.

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