2008 checkpoint stop tied to USD bribery case - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

2008 checkpoint stop tied to USD bribery case

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  • USD president addresses FBI investigation into bribery scandal

    USD president addresses FBI investigation into bribery scandal

    Saturday, April 16 2011 1:06 PM EDT2011-04-16 17:06:19 GMT
    University of San Diego President Mary E. Lyons said Friday that she and the school's trustees have "unwavering support" for men's basketball coach Bill Grier and athletic director Ky Snyder 
    University of San Diego President Mary E. Lyons said Friday that she and the school's trustees have "unwavering support" for men's basketball coach Bill Grier and athletic director Ky Snyder as the FBI investigates a bribery case involving two former players and a former assistant coach. 

SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - Allegations of a point-shaving scandal continue to rock USD, as newly released court documents shed new light on the case. Those documents show the probe started three years ago, as a drug trafficking case.

Court records show Steve Goria, one of the suspects accused in the USD bribery scandal, was the first to tip off authorities after border patrol agents searched his car at a checkpoint in Orange County.

On the heels of a federal indictment of 10 people, including USD basketball players, accused in a bribery scandal new court records reveal the investigation all started with a traffic stop back in 2008.

According to court documents obtained by News 8, a suitcase - stuffed with nearly $105,000 in cash and marijuana - was seized by border patrol agents after stopping a Toyota Camry in Orange County January 28.

Behind the wheel was Goria one of three accused financiers behind the game-fixing allegations.

Goria allegedly told agents he was headed to Las Vegas to pay off some gambling debts, but investigators believed he was traveling to Northern California to buy pot.

Authorities followed the money trail, which uncovered an illegal sports betting operation and attempts to bribe USD players, including former star point guard, Brandon Johnson.

At a news conference Friday, coach Bill Grier maintained he knew nothing about the point shaving scheme until FBI agents showed up at his home.

"It has been an emotional roller coaster for me, my family, our basketball program," Grier said.

While it's still unclear how many games may have been compromised, athletic director Ky Snyder remains hopeful this scandal won't negatively impact the school's future recruitment.

"I think the reputation of the university and the way we conduct our selves in the athletic program will win out over time," Snyder noted.

If convicted, each of the 10 people charged could face up to five years in prison and a $25,000 fine.

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