Today, Tony Bosch is a free man. After spending a little more than a year and a half in federal custody for orchestrating the biggest illegal steroid operation in pro sports history, Bosch walked out of a Miami halfway house yesterday.
So what's next for the onetime chief of Biogenesis, which a 2014 Miami New Times investigation revealed as the source of performance-enhancing drugs for Alex Rodriguez, Ryan Braun, Nelson Cruz, and a host of other big-leaguers?
Bosch is concentrating on rebuilding his family, his attorney says — and also hopes to speak to kids about avoiding the drugs he used to peddle.
"He's been doing really well. He's clean, he's sober, and he's better than I've ever seen him," says Susy Ribero-Ayala, who was a longtime friend before representing Bosch in federal court. "He's working toward mending all of his relationships with his family and friends."
In February 2015, U.S. District Judge Darrin Gayles sentenced Bosch to 48 months in federal prison — a record long term for selling steroids. Bosch didn't help matters by failing a cocaine test while awaiting trial in the case.
But prosecutors later asked Gayles to reduce the sentence, citing Bosch's cooperation and willingness to help Major League Baseball go after his former clients, including Rodriguez. A-Rod later served a record year-long steroid suspension thanks largely to Bosch's testimony.
Bosch actually left prison for a halfway house earlier this year and has been working during the day at a local wireless store doing data entry, Ribero-Ayala says.
As part of his federal sentence, he'll still have to do community service. Though Bosch hasn't nailed down any exact plans, his attorney says he wants to talk to kids about avoiding PEDs.
"He wants to focus on giving speeches at high schools and colleges on nutrition, about getting the same results you would from PEDs from nutrition instead," Ribero-Ayala says. "He wants to talk to them about being able to basically bring up your levels of testosterone through your diet alone."
Not everyone is thrilled with that prospect. Porter Fischer, a former Biogenesis employee who leaked documents to New Times revealing Bosch's steroid operation, slammed the feds for cutting his sentence and criticized the idea of letting him talk to kids.
After all, Bosch's clientele at Biogenesis included a number of high school athletes, Fischer points out.
“So after that slap on the wrist, watered-down sentence ... Tony Bosch wants to talk to kids?" says Fischer, who has since started an anti-PED nonprofit called the Porter Project. "What school, parent or coach would be stupid or irresponsible enough to let that Bosch anywhere near children again?"
Ribero-Ayala says Bosch doesn't know what he'll do for a living now that he's out of federal custody. But she says he hasn't spoken with Rodriguez, who retired midseason this year, or any of his old baseball contacts.
"He hasn't been in touch with MLB and certainly hasn't talked with any of his old clients," Ribero-Ayala says. "He's very remorseful and wants to do things the right way now."
Keep Miami New Times Free... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Miami with no paywalls.