Suspects in Ortiz shooting to be held for up to a year during probe

Former Boston Red Sox star David Ortiz was seriously injured June 9, 2019 when he was shot while visiting his native Dominican Republic (AFP Photo/Mike Zarrilli)
Former Boston Red Sox star David Ortiz was seriously injured June 9, 2019 when he was shot while visiting his native Dominican Republic (AFP Photo/Mike Zarrilli)

Santo Domingo (AFP) - Nine suspects in the shooting of American baseball star David Ortiz will remain in custody for up to a year while the investigation proceeds, a judge in the Dominican Republic has ordered.

The attorney general's office made the announcement late Friday and also said the probe was at an advanced stage.

The motive is not known for the June 9 shooting of Ortiz, a long-time Boston Red Sox great who is from the Dominican Republic and is now retired from the sport.

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Ortiz, 43, was shot in the back while he was at a nightclub with friends.

So far 10 people have been taken into custody, including one who surrendered on Friday. Another four are on the run.

Dominican law allows suspects to be held for a year while a criminal investigation is carried out and evidence is gathered.

In a first operation in the Dominican Republic, doctors removed Ortiz's gallbladder and part of his colon and intestines. He also sustained liver damage. Ortiz was then flown to Boston for more surgery.

The alleged trigger man is among those in custody. Police say he is a 25-year-old who claims to have been offered the equivalent of around $8,000 to shoot Ortiz.

The former designated hitter and first baseman, who retired in 2016, was in the Dominican Republic for business and personal reasons.

Known affectionately as "Big Papi," he played 14 seasons for the Red Sox and made 10 All-Star appearances in his 20-year career.

Ortiz hit 541 home runs with 1,768 RBIs in 2,408 games in the major league.

Ortiz began his career by playing six seasons for the Minnesota Twins (1997-2002), but his career took off after he joined the Red Sox.

He helped Boston capture its first World Series title in 86 years in 2004, when he was the MVP of the American League championship series.

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