NEW YORK (WFAN/AP) — Probation it is for the assistant to a Canadian sports doctor with ties to Carlos Beltran, Jose Reyes and Alex Rodriguez.
Mary Ann Catalano, who cooperated with prosecutors on her role in bringing unapproved drugs, including human growth hormone, into the U.S. to treat professional athletes, could have drawn up to a year in prison for making false statements to federal officers, but prosecutors asked a judge to impose probation because of her help.
Catalano worked for Anthony Galea, a healing specialist from Toronto who was sought out by the biggest names in sports, including Tiger Woods and Alex Rodriguez. Galea pleaded guilty July 6 to bringing mislabeled drugs into the U.S. He could be sentenced in October to up to two years in prison.
Prosecutors said Catalano, 33, initially lied when she was stopped at the Peace Bridge in Buffalo in 2009 but later told the truth.
Galea, who wasn’t licensed to work in the U.S., was accused of treating 20 professional athletes at their homes, hotels and friends’ houses from October 2007 to September 2009. Prosecutors have not disclosed the names of athletes who may have gotten banned treatments.
Most of the U.S. charges were dismissed with Galea’s plea, and he agreed to cooperate with investigators and disclose the patients’ identities and their treatments. They included golfers, professional baseball and football players and others.
Catalano had worked in Galea’s office when she was 15, stayed in contact with him through college and went back to work for him at the Institute of Sports Medicine Health and Wellness when she graduated in 2004, her attorney said.
As Galea developed a practice involving professional athletes in the U.S., she began accompanying him on trips across the border. She began driving separately and took on the responsibility of transporting the medical equipment and supplies after Galea had trouble with border agents leaving Canada, a court filing said.
She and Galea agreed that if asked by border officers about the supplies, she’d say they were for demonstration purposes at a medical conference.
Woods has said he’s been treated by Galea but didn’t receive performance-enhancing drugs. Reyes and Beltran also have acknowledged talking to federal authorities during the investigation.
A-Rod told Major League Baseball officials that he didn’t receive performance-enhancing drugs from Galea after the doctor told the AP he had prescribed anti-inflammatories for him.
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