Betting on Barry Bonds

Between casinos in Las Vegas and online sportsbooks, gamblers can wager on just about anything these days -- even a possible indictment against San Francisco Giants slugger Barry Bonds.

At least one online gambling site is allowing users to place bets on whether Bonds will face federal charges by the end of July. The grand jury is investigating whether Bonds lied under oath when he testified in 2003 that he never knowingly took steroids. The grand jury is also investigating allegations of money laundering against Bonds.

Much of what the grand jury does happens in secret. It meets behind closed doors and nobody knows exactly when its term expires. The panel meets on Thursdays and there are rumors in the legal world that an indictment could come as soon as this Thursday.

If Bonds is charged with perjury and tax evasion, he would have to turn himself in to authorities or face being arrested.

Costa Rica-based gambling website Bodog.com is allowing users to make or lose money off whatever the grand jury decides. Users can place maximum bets of $50 on whether Bonds will be indicted.

If the bettors at Bodog.com are right, Bonds will be indicted, Bodog.com spokesman Kal Suurkasc said.

The Bonds offering is proving to be popular on Bodog.com, Suurkasc said.

If Bonds is indicted on perjury and found guilty, he could face five years in prison. A conviction on a money laundering charge could also mean five years in prison and hefty fines.

Baseball analysts believe federal charges could also mean the end of Bonds' career and a black eye for Major League Baseball.

A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's Office in San Francisco declined to comment on whether the grand jury was nearing the end of its investigation.

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