CHICAGO – A former Chicago White Sox scout has pleaded not guilty to charges he took kickbacks from Latin American baseball prospects.
Jorge Oquendo Rivera of Puerto Rico entered his plea Friday in U.S. District Court in Chicago. He declined to comment after his court appearance.
The Chicago Tribune reports that along with the 49-year-old Oquendo, the White Sox's former senior director of player personnel, David Wilder, and former scout Victor Mateo have been charged with mail fraud. They are accused of inflating prospects' signing bonuses, then kicking back the money they added on to themselves.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Tyler Murray says Wilder and Mateo also were scheduled to enter their pleas Friday. However, they didn't attend the arraignment because of an "emergency situation." He says they will be arraigned next week.