New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft and others charged as part of a prostitution solicitation sting in Florida last month have been offered deferred prosecution deals that would ultimately lead to the dismissal of solicitation charges, according to a published report on Tuesday.
The Wall Street Journal reported that the agreement proposed by prosecutors mandates the men review the evidence and admit they would be found guilty if the case went to trial, something former assistant U.S. Attorney David S. Weinstein said is not typically part of such diversion agreements.
“That only usually occurs in a guilty or no-contest plea, not in a deferred prosecution or pre-trial diversion (deal),” Weinstein told USA TODAY Sports.
Kraft, 77, was charged with two misdemeanor counts of soliciting prostitution linked to
visits to the Orchids of Asia Day Spa in Jupiter, Florida, last month. Orchids of Asia was one of the spas under surveillance as part of multi-jurisdiction prostitution ring investigation.
Kraft pleaded not guilty earlier this month and asked for a bench trial in the case. There is no indication whether he would take such an offer. Messages left with Kraft’s attorney and the Palm Beach County prosecutor’s office by USA TODAY Sports were not immediately returned on Tuesday.
He faces a 10-day minimum sentence and a maximum of up to two years in jail if convicted on both charges.
Under the first-time offender diversion program, The Wall Street Journal reported Kraft would have to perform 100 hours of community service, undergo an STD screening and pay court costs.
Even if the charges are ultimately dropped, Kraft could still face discipline under the NFL’s personal-conduct policy. The policy does not require a conviction – or even charges – for an individual to be sanctioned by the league.