Clemens Defense Rests Case in Ex-Pitcher’s Perjury Trial

Lawyers for Roger Clemens rested their defense of the former New York Yankees pitcher in his trial on charges that he lied to Congress when he denied using performance enhancing drugs.

Clemens’s lawyers, who called 23 witnesses during the trial in Washington, ended today with Jerry Laveroni, former head of player security for the Yankees. Just before resting, Clemens’s attorney read a “stipulation” that he was tested for steroids by Major League Baseball from 2003 through 2007 and never found positive. The document noted MLB didn’t test for human growth hormone at the time.

Laveroni said Clemens’s chief accuser, Brian McNamee, has “zero” credibility.

“I don’t think he could be believed under oath,” Laveroni said in a response to a question from Rusty Hardin, a lawyer for Clemens.

After the jury was sent out of the room for a break, U.S. District Judge Reggie Walton called Clemens to the lawyer’s lectern and asked him whether he had talked to his attorneys about his right to testify in his own defense.

“Yes sir, I am not testifying,” Clemens said. It was the first time he had spoken during the trial, now in its ninth week.

Clemens, a seven-time Cy Young Award winner as the best pitcher in his league, is charged with one count of obstructing a congressional investigation into the use of performance- enhancing drugs by professional athletes.

He’s also charged with three counts of making false statements and of perjury stemming from his testimony to a House panel. If convicted, he faces as long as 21 months in prison.

Prosecutors said they will put on a rebuttal case.

The case is U.S. v. Clemens, 1:10-cr-00223, U.S. District Court, District of Columbia (Washington).

To contact the reporter on this story: Tom Schoenberg in Washington at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at

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