SAN FRANCISCO, June 16 (UPI) -- Attorneys for Barry Bonds asked a judge to overturn his obstruction-of-justice conviction for evasive testimony, saying his words were taken out of context.
On April 13 a federal jury was deadlocked on three perjury charges against the former Giants great, but they determined Bonds attempted to obstruct justice with a rambling and evasive response when asked if his trainer had ever given him injectable drugs.
Bonds' attorneys Wednesday asked a federal judge to overturn that conviction, saying prosecutors repeatedly asked their client about injectable drugs and Bonds, on three separate occasions, flatly denied his trainer, Greg Anderson, had ever given him the drugs in question, the San Francisco Chronicle reported Thursday.
Anderson has been in jail for more than a year for refusing to testify against Bonds.
A defendant cannot be convicted of obstructing justice "when he temporarily gives a truthful but unresponsive answer, before directly and fully answering the same question moments later," Bonds' attorneys argued.
"There is no legal authority for the proposition that truthful but 'evasive' statements ... can constitute obstruction of justice," they said in requesting U.S. District Judge Susan Illston to either find Bonds not guilty or order a retrial.
Illston scheduled a hearing for June 24.