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Clemens Pleads Not Guilty in Federal Court

from – Roger Clemens pleaded not guilty Monday to charges he made false statements to Congress about his use of performance-enhancing drugs.

Accompanied by defense attorney Rusty Hardin, Clemens appeared in the Washington, D.C. courtroom of U.S. District Judge Reggie Walton.

Clemens told Walton he understood the charges against him, and answered, “Not guilty, your honor” when asked how he pleaded.

The seven-time Cy Young winner had his mug shot and fingerprints taken inside the courthouse, the Houston Chronicle reports.

Clemens, who pitched for the Red Sox, Blue Jays, Yankees and Astros, was expected to fly to Myrtle Beach, S.C., for a golf tournament, according to the New York Daily News.

The six-count grand jury indictment alleges Clemens obstructed a congressional inquiry with 15 statements that he made under oath, including denials that he had used steroids or human growth hormone. The indictment says he lied and committed perjury regarding the same matters.

All charges relate to Clemens’ February 2008 testimony before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

Clemens could be sentenced to up to 30 years in prison and faces a $1.5 million fine, but The New York Times reports a conviction likely would bring a 15- to 21-month sentence.

In the 2008 Congressional committee hearing, Clemens flatly denied he had ever used PEDs. That contradicted testimony by former trainer and friend Brian McNamee.

McNamee told investigators for the 2007 Mitchell Report that he injected Clemens with steroids and human growth hormone at least 16 times in 1998, 2000 and 2001. Clemens denied the allegations, and both repeated their conflicting claims at the congressional hearing on Feb. 13, 2008, with Clemens saying: “I have never taken steroids or HGH.”


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