Former NBA Player Dirk Minniefield will not face jail time for an alleged $10 million mortgage fraud he concocted in Texas, but instead will enter a federal diversion program.
Minniefield, who played three seasons for the Dallas Mavericks after starring at Kentucky, was arrested in December 2008 on one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and eight counts of wire fraud. The Associated Press reported that U.S. District Judge Melinda Harmon canceled his trial on an agreement that Minniefield will enter the program.
While serving as a real estate agent, Minniefield is alleged to have represented buyers without meeting them and that buyers never visited the properties they were buying, the Associated Press reported. He was also accused of working with the sellers’ agents to increase the sale price of homes by including a large payment for renovations.
For the next 18 months Minniefield must submit to strict oversight of his actions and take part in a wide range of community service actions, the Associated Press reported.
”He’s got to stay out of trouble,” said his attorney, Steven Rosen. ”There’s no drinking, there’s no bars, there’s no nothing. And they could have him speak before high school kids or college kids, or whatever they need, he’s got to do it. He’s got to prove to the U.S. government that he can conduct himself like everybody else does, and abide by the law.”
Rosen still stuck up for his client, telling the Lexington Herald Leader that he just got caught up in a bad situation.
“What Dirk Minniefield was guilty of was being negligent,” Rosen said, and he “was probably being too loyal to people and got caught up with something he shouldn’t have got caught up with.”