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LA Dodgers Fire Shohei Ohtani’s Interpreter Amid Allegations of Illegal Gambling-Related Theft

Shohei Ohtani Los Angeles Dodgers superstar Shohei Ohtani has sparked massive media interest for reasons beyond his unprecedented sports talent. His long-time interpreter and constant companion, Ippei Mizuhara, has been fired by the LA-based professional baseball team amid allegations of a major illegal gambling-related theft.

As reported by ESPN, wire transfers worth at least $4.5 Million have been sent from the Japanese baseball star’s account to a suspected illegal bookmaking operation, run by Mathew Bowyer. The bookmaker had been allegedly subjected to a federal investigation over an illegal betting scheme, with no subsequent criminal charges, at the time of writing.

While 38 states have authorized sports betting, California remains out of the legal wagering domain, at least for now. In the context of sports betting, Major League Baseball follows a strict internal policy that prohibits all players and officials from placing bets on any baseball game or engaging with illegal betting operators.

According to media outlets, the high-profile interpreter claimed he did not know that wagering with the bookmaker was against the rules. However, Mr. Mizuhara confirmed he was aware of the league’s restrictions with regard to betting on baseball games and that he had never bet on baseball.

On Wednesday, the LA Dodgers’ senior communications director confirmed that while the team was currently in the process of obtaining further information related to the case, the contract with Ippei Mizuhara had been terminated.

Shohei Ohtani’s Attorneys Turn “the Matter over to the Authorities”

Ippei Mizuhara Berk Brettler LLP, a law firm in West Hollywood, California, has confirmed that following the recent media inquiries, the baseball player had become a target of a colossal theft, and, therefore, the matter had been turned over to the authorities.

Ever since the major scandal shook the sports world, Ippei Mizuhara has repeatedly changed his story. As per reports, he initially said he had asked Ohtani to bail him out of the gambling debt. Then, he reportedly said that the baseball player affirmed his support, made the payments in several installments, and wanted to ensure the interpreter would never engage in sports betting again. Subsequently, Mizuhara changed his version, claiming the superstar was neither aware of the accrued gambling debt nor transferred any funds.

The news about the major illegal gambling-related theft came at a time when the MVP Award winner made his much-anticipated MLB regular season debut. “Shotime”, who is praised for his ability to pitch and hit in the same game, and one of baseball’s greatest players of all time, made history by signing a record-setting $700 Million contract with the LA Dodgers for 10 years.

On the other hand, Mizuhara has been widely acclaimed in Japan for his professional competency in interpreting the baseball player’s comments into everyday English. As per reports, he assumed responsibility for his actions and was ready to face the consequences.

 Author: Harrison Young

Harrison Young is an experienced writer, who started his career almost 8 years ago. Prior to joining our team at CasinoGamesPro, he worked as an editor for a small magazine.