Authorities confirmed on Tuesday that a Dominican court convicted ten people in the attempted murder of former Red Sox baseball star David Ortiz in 2019.
Ortiz, a Dominican native, was ambushed by a man who got off a motorcycle and shot him in the back at close range while he was at a bar with friends in Santo Domingo’s affluent neighbourhood.
The alleged shooter, Rolfi Ferreyra Cruz, was among two men sentenced to 30 years in prison by Santo Domingo’s First Collegiate Court.
Eight others were sentenced to prison terms ranging from five to twenty years. Three other defendants, including Vctor Hugo Gómez Vásquez, who was accused of planning the attack, were acquitted due to insufficient evidence.
According to American private investigators hired by Ortiz, the Hall of Fame slugger was targeted by a Dominican drug trafficker who was jealous of him.
Former Boston police commissioner Edward Davis’ findings contradicted a previous theory by Dominican law enforcement that the hitman was hired to shoot Ortiz’s cousin Sixto David Fernandez, who was sitting at the same table.
According to Dominican authorities, the hitmen mistook Fernandez for Ortiz, one of the country’s most popular ballplayers.
Before retiring in 2016, Ortiz was a fearsome power hitter with a ready smile who led the Red Sox to three World Series championships, was a 10-time All-Star, and hit 541 home runs. He was spending part of the year in the Dominican Republic when he was shot.
Ortiz was critically injured in the June 2019 shooting. After the shooting, doctors in the Dominican Republic removed Ortiz’s gallbladder and part of his intestine, and he underwent additional surgery in the United States.
The criminal organisation, use of illegal firearms, attempted murder, and complicity were among the crimes for which the ten men were sentenced, according to the court in a statement.
Authorities stated that more information about the sentencing will be released on February 8, 2023.