Ex-Tiger eager to go straight

In 1997, McLain was convicted of embezzlement, money laundering, mail fraud and conspiracy in connection with the theft of $3 million from the pension fund of a meat packing company he owned. He was sentenced to eight years in prison. For the work-release program, he worked at a convenience store.

The Toronto Star
October 29, 2003

Ex-Tiger eager to go straight
McLain did time for embezzlement. 30-game winner seeks radio career.

The former Detroit Tigers great recently finished a six-month work-release program after spending six years in federal prison for embezzlement, money laundering, mail fraud and conspiracy.

"No one is sorrier for what happened than I am," the 59-year-old said. "Nobody."

McLain captivated baseball fans in 1968 by pitching his way to 30 victories, the first time that feat had been accomplished since Dizzy Dean did it in 1934. But his success on the mound was marred by brushes with the law. He went to prison twice after leading Detroit to the 1968 World Series championship.

On the field, he also ran into trouble. In 1970, commissioner Bowie Kuhn suspended McLain for involvement in gambling. He was suspended twice more by the Tigers, once for dumping water on two sportswriters.

McLain later took to the airwaves as a local talk-show host. That career was cut short after he was indicted in 1984 on charges of racketeering, extortion and cocaine trafficking and sentenced to 23 years in prison. An appeals court threw out the verdict 2 1/2 years later, setting him free.

In 1997, McLain was convicted of embezzlement, money laundering, mail fraud and conspiracy in connection with the theft of $3 million from the pension fund of a meat packing company he owned. He was sentenced to eight years in prison. For the work-release program, he worked at a convenience store.

McLain says his sights are now focused on his family and a return to radio.

"I really want to do radio again in a major way, and hopefully an opportunity will come about soon," he said.

ASSOCIATED PRESS


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