By Ryan Gaydos
Published August 30, 2019
Former Major League Baseball stars Octavio Dotel and Luis Castillo racked up another win, with both ex-ballplayers reportedly cleared in a Dominican Republic drug case after a judge ruled there was no evidence linking the pair to the case.
Dotel, 45, a reliever who pitched for a then-record 13 teams, and Castillo, 43, a three-time All-Star and three-time Gold Glove winner, were among 31 people linked to notorious drug trafficker Cesar Emilio Peralta, Dominican Attorney General Jean Alain Rodríguez said last week.
Dotel was arrested and Castillo was cited.
Prosecutors accused Dotel and Castillo of using the money they earned from playing baseball in the U.S. to help launder money for Peralta.
Judge Jose Alejandro Vargas determined the prosecutors didn’t show enough evidence the two players committed the crimes they were alleged to have done, ESPN Deportes reported.
Dotel still faces an illegal possession of a firearm charge and must pay $20,000 bail. He also cannot leave the country.
Manuel Sierra, Dotel’s lawyer, told ESPN Deportes that authorities owe his client an apology.
“The judge found that my client has nothing to do with the charges imputed to him by the public prosecutor. About the firearm that was seized in one of his vehicles, we have the documentation that proves that it is not illegal and we will present it in the court in a timely manner,” Sierra said.
Dotel pitched from 1999-2013, racking up at least 16 saves on three occasions, including a 36-save season for Houston and Oakland in 2004. He also played for the New York Mets, New York Yankees, Kansas City Royals, Atlanta Braves, Chicago White Sox, Pittsburgh Pirates, Los Angeles Dodgers, Colorado Rockies, Toronto Blue Jays, St. Louis Cardinals.
He earned his World Series ring as a member of the Cardinals in 2011.
Castillo played for the Florida Marlins, Minnesota Twins and the Mets, exclusively playing second base. While with the Marlins, he led all of baseball in stolen bases with 62 in 2000 and 48 bags swiped in 2002.
The next season, he was part of the Marlins second World Series winner, helping the upstart Florida squad beat the Yankees in six games.