Former MLB players cleared after being arrested and linked to drug kingpin

·Yahoo Sports Contributor
Former MLB players Octavio Dotel and Luis Castillo have been cleared on charges of being connected to drug kingpin César Emilio Peralta. (AP)
Former MLB players Octavio Dotel and Luis Castillo have been cleared on charges of being connected to drug kingpin César Emilio Peralta. (AP)

Former Major League Baseball players Octavio Dotel and Luis Castillo were released from a Dominican Republic jail on Thursday after a judge ruled there wasn’t enough evidence to link them to drug kingpin César Emilio Peralta.

Dominican newspaper Diario Libre first reported that Dotel and Castillo were among the 18 arrested when Dominican authorities conducted a raid on properties owned by Peralta, who’s also known as César the Abuser.

Dotel, 45, and Castillo, 43, were charged with being directly linked to Peralta’s cocaine and opioid empire. According to the New York Daily News, Dotel’s bail was set at 1 million Dominican pesos, or about $19,500, based on allegations that authorities found illegal weapons in his home.

The New York Post reports that prosecutors claimed Peralta leaned on the big-name pals to help launder his ill-gotten gains. Lawyers for both men spent the last week denying those claims and their clients’ connection to Peralta. Judge Jose Alejandro Vargas ultimately agreed based on the prosecutors’ lack of evidence supporting a link.

Authorities raided more than 15 clubs, 10 restaurants, six shopping malls, three commercial plazas and 20 apartment buildings as part of their investigation.

It’s reported that Peralta has not yet been taken into custody.

Dotel and Castillo each spent 15 seasons playing in MLB.

Dotel pitched for 13 different teams over his career, notching 59 wins and 109 saves. Castillo was a member of the Florida Marlins 2003 World Series championship team. He also spent time with the Minnesota Twins and New York Mets.

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