The NFL indefinitely suspended Michael Vick without pay just hours after he acknowledged in court papers that he did, indeed, bankroll gambling on dogfighting and helped kill some dogs not worthy of the pit.
Vick, however, insisted he placed no bets of his own nor took
any winnings. In disciplining Vick yesterday, commissioner Roger Goodell said Vick's admitted conduct was ``not only illegal but also cruel and reprehensible'' and regardless whether he personally placed bets, ``your actions in funding the betting and your association with illegal gambling both violate the terms of your NFL player contract and expose you to corrupting influences in derogation of one of the most fundamental responsibilities of an NFL player.''
A ``summary of facts'' signed by Vick was filed along with his
written plea agreement on a federal dogfighting conspiracy charge.
He will appear before U.S. District Judge Henry E. Hudson to
formally plead guilty Monday and then await sentencing at a later
The court documents and a statement by Vick's legal team seek to portray him as less involved in the dogfighting ring than three co-defendants who previously pleaded guilty and agreed to testify
against the Atlanta Falcons quarterback.
After the plea agreement was filed, Vick's defense team said in
a written statement -- quote --``While Mr. Vick is not personally
charged with or responsible for committing all of the acts alleged
in the indictment, as with any conspiracy charge, he is taking fullresponsibility for his actions and the actions of the others
involved. Mr. Vick apologizes for his poor judgment in associating
himself with those involved in dog fighting and realizes he should
never have been involved in this conduct.''
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