San Francisco, CA (Sports Network) - Barry Bonds' personal trainer, a track coach and a pair of Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative (BALCO) executives were charged Thursday with distributing illegal drugs, including steroids and human growth hormones.
The San Francisco Giants slugger, who testified before a grand jury back in December, was not charged or named in any of the court documents. None of the athletes involved were named in the indictments.
Those named in the 42-count indictments include: Bonds' personal trainer Greg F. Anderson; BALCO president and CEO Victor Conte Jr.; BACLO vice president James J. Valente; and track and field coach Remi Korchemny.
The four men were charged with distributing anabolic steroids to dozens of athletes, including elite track and field competitors, Major League Baseball players and National Football League players.
"This is a problem we can not address alone," Attorney General John Ashcroft said at an afternoon press conference in Washington, DC. "This is a problem that requires a coordinated effort, an effort coordinated with amateur athletics, with the leagues, the owners, and the players of professional sports in the United States.
"The Department of Justice looks forward to working with those interested in integrity in athletics, and in the well being of athletes and the well being of competition."
The scheme allegedly took place between December 2001 and September 2003, with the defendants conspiring to defraud the United States through the distribution of illegal drugs. The men allegedly distributed the steroid through the form of a testosterone-based cream, mixing the testosterone with the cream to intentionally conceal the effects of such a contraband.
They also distributed a liquid drug called tetrahydragestrinone (THG), a designer steroid. Human growth hormones were also given out unlawfully to athletes to improve their performance.
These charges could prove devastating to Bonds, who has put together one of the best four-year spans in baseball history over the last four seasons, including a record-shattering 2001 campaign.
During that season, Bonds hit an unprecedented 73 home runs. He has hit over 40 homers each of the last four seasons, while also posting an on-base percentage of over .500 for each of the past three years.
Three Oakland Raider players tested positive for THG last year, and former Raider Bill Romanowski has been linked to BALCO. Several track and field stars have also been associated with the lab.