Tim Donaghy got a lucky break on Tuesday, as a federal attorney said that the gambling goof doesn’t have to pay the NBA the $1.4 million the league is trying to rustle from its former referee.
Will Brinson of AOL FANHOUSE bounces along a report from NEW YORK NEWSDAY that the Association was asking for the million-dollar amount from their former employee. The figure was based on Donaghy’s league salary from 2003 to 2006 plus the costs of investigating the ref’s alleged game-fixing.
However, the Feds decided that $1.4 mil was a bit too much:
In a letter filed Tuesday in Brooklyn federal court, assistant U.S. Attorney Jeffrey Goldberg said the government believes Donaghy shouldn’t have to pay more than $500,000 in salary and benefits to the league. That amount represents the value of Donaghy’s “honest services” for the years 2003 to part of 2006, money the NBA isn’t entitled to recoup under federal law, Goldberg said.
The only amount of salary the NBA can get back as restitution would be for part of 2006 to 2007, the period during which Donaghy admitted being part of gambling conspiracy to which he plead guilty last year, Goldberg said.
At least the league will be getting something back for its trouble. And the $500,000 is still a pretty penny for Donaghy to reimburse.
Maybe the NBA can use that money to hire some refs who’ll do what they’re told and keep their mouth shut.