Dominican prosecutors claim that Wander Franco paid hush money to the mother of the minor girl to whom he is accused of having an inappropriate relationship.
The Tampa Bay Rays shortstop is accused of commercial sexual exploitation and money laundering – along with the mother of the minor.
The 22-year-old All-Star has been in jail since being arrested on Monday in Puerto Plata. Prosecutors want Franco to be held on an $86,000 bond and recommend that he and the girl’s mother be placed under house arrest and prevented from leaving the Dominican Republic.
A verdict is expected to be issued on Friday. The judge could release Franco on bond; temporarily detain him; prohibit him from leaving the country; or require him to appear occasionally until the trial or investigation is completed.
If there is a lack of evidence, the case could be dismissed, according to the Tampa Bay Times.
„The measures demanded by the State Ministry aim to ensure the integrity of the process,“ said a statement yesterday.
Franco’s lawyer, Teodosio Jáquez Encarnació, refused to speak to the media – prosecutors also declined to comment – but informed them that his client is doing well.
Police were unable to locate the shortstop when they raided two of his properties in the Dominican Republic on December 26. He did not appear for questioning two days later when requested by the prosecution, but showed up on Monday for a three-hour interview.
Franco was already on leave from MLB in August.