WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump has pardoned Edward DeBartolo Jr., the previous San Francisco 49ers proprietor convicted in a playing fraud scandal.
DeBartolo, 73, who helped to construct the 49ers’ dynasty of the 1980s and ’90s, was concerned in one of many largest house owners’ scandals within the sport’s historical past.
In 1998, he pleaded responsible to failing to report a felony when he paid $400,000 to former Louisiana Gov. Edwin Edwards in trade for a riverboat playing license.
The White Home introduced the shock determination to reporters on Tuesday. NFL greats Jerry Rice, Jim Brown, Ronnie Lott and Charles Haley have been in attendance.
DeBartolo, whose 49ers received 5 Tremendous Bowls beneath his management, stepped down as proprietor in 1997 after two Louisiana newspapers reported he could be indicted for playing fraud. He prevented jail, was fined $1 million and was suspended for a 12 months by the NFL. However the episode successfully ended his NFL profession.
Rice, a Professional Soccer Corridor of Famer who performed on three of DeBartolo’s Tremendous Bowl-winning groups, stated DeBartolo “was like that 12th man” of the good 49ers groups.
Former 49ers gamers Jerry Rice, Charles Haley and Ronnie Lott have been in attendance for Tuesday’s shock announcement in Washington. EPA/ERIK S. LESSER
“He is the principle motive why we received so many Tremendous Bowls,” Rice stated. “So at this time is a superb day for him. I am glad to be right here and be part of that. It is simply one thing I’ll always remember. This man, he has executed a lot locally, has executed a lot in NFL soccer.”
DeBartolo withdrew from the riverboat venture after the state playing board demanded he hand over all paperwork he gave to the grand jury. The paperwork included an “unexecuted settlement” between DeBartolo and Stephen Edwards, in response to a replica of a grand jury subpoena obtained by the newspapers.
The state playing board canceled the venture after DeBartolo withdrew.
The DeBartolo household constructed their fortune by way of business actual property — principally proudly owning purchasing malls. The household enterprise was began by DeBartolo’s father, who died in 1994. Along with the 49ers, the household additionally owned the Pittsburgh Penguins of the Nationwide Hockey League earlier than promoting the staff in 1991.
DeBartolo Jr. ran the 49ers beginning in 1977, and his hiring of coach Invoice Walsh in 1979 led to the franchise’s most profitable period. From 1982 to 1995, the staff received 5 Tremendous Bowls.
After the suspension, DeBartolo gave management of the staff to his sister, Denise DeBartolo York.
He by no means returned to the NFL after his suspension. The staff is now run by his nephew, Jed York.
DeBartolo was elected to the Professional Soccer Corridor of Fame in 2016.