A Dominican court convicted 10 people connected to the 2019 attempted murder of legendary Boston Red Sox slugger David Ortiz, authorities confirmed Tuesday.
A man ambushed the baseball Hall of Famer and shot him in the back while Ortiz was at a bar with friends in Santo Domingo.
Two men, including alleged shooter Rolfi Ferreras Cruz, were each sentenced to 30 years in prison by Santo Domingo’s First Collegiate Court.
Víctor Hugo Gómez Vásquez, the alleged mastermind behind the attack, along with two other defendants, were acquitted due to the lack of sufficient evidence.
Eight others received prison sentences of between five and 20 years.
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Alberto Miguel Rodriguez Mota, 28, was sentenced to 20 years. Rodriguez Mota is “the person who paid those who carried out the act” against Ortiz, according the Dominican Republic’s Office of Attorney General.
Oliver Moises Mirabal, 28, and Eduardo Ciprian Lebron, 24, each received ten-year prison sentences.
Gabriel Alexander Perez Vizcaino, 31, and Joel Rodriguez de la Cruz, 28, were sentenced to nine and six years, respectively.
Franklin Junior Meran, 26, Junior Cesar La Hoz Vargas, 28, and Porfirio Ayendi Dechamps Vasquez, 29, received five-year sentences.
The convictions included charges of attempted murder, conspiring to use and using illegal firearms and associating with criminals.
Ortiz retained the services of U.S.-based private investigators who ultimately determined the former baseball player was targeted by a Dominican drug trafficker whose motive stemmed from jealousy.
Former Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis’ findings were notably different from law enforcement in the Dominican Republic’s theory.
Dominican authorities believed a hitman was actually hired to shoot Ortiz’s cousin Sixto David Fernandez. Ortiz and Fernandez were sharing a table at the time of the shooting.
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Dominican law enforcement also previously noted that the hitmen confused Fernandez with Ortiz, although the three-time World Series champion is one of the country’s most beloved and most recognizable figures.
Ortiz, affectionately knows as “Big Papi,” is a 10-time MLB All-Star and hit 541 home runs in a career spanning two decades. He retired in 2016.
At the time of the shooting, Ortiz was spending part of the year living in his native Dominican Republic.
The shooting left Ortiz seriously injured. Doctors removed his gallbladder and part of an intestine. He later returned to the United States, where he underwent additional surgeries.
The 10 convicted men are also required to pay a fee for damages caused, according to the attorney general’s office.
Further details of the sentencing will be be released Feb. 8, 2023, authorities noted.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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