SAN FRANCISCO - Barry Bonds was charged in a new indictment Tuesday with 15 felony counts alleging he lied to a grand jury when he denied knowingly using performance-enhancing drugs use and that he hampered the federal government's doping investigation.
The career home run leader originally was charged in November by a federal grand jury with four counts of perjury and one count of obstruction of justice, but in February U.S. District Judge Susan Illston ordered prosecutors to rewrite the indictment because multiple alleged lies were lumped into individual charges.
On Tuesday, a grand jury indicted Bonds on 14 counts of giving false declarations to a grand jury in 2003 and one count of obstruction of justice. No new lies were alleged in the new indictment.
'It's exactly the same,' Golden Gate University law professor Peter Keane said. 'It's two ways of saying it's lying and there's really no substantial difference between what he was charged with then and what he is charged with now.'
The case against Bonds remains built on whether he lied when he told the grand jury that his personal trainer, Greg Anderson, never supplied him with steroids and human growth hormone.
'Barry Bonds is innocent,' the player's lead attorney, Allen Ruby, said. Ruby said Bonds would appear in court to plead not guilty to the new charges.
Bonds' next hearing already had been scheduled for June 6 before the new indictment was unsealed, but Ruby said it is unclear whether Bonds' will be expected to enter a plea then.
The Major League Baseball Players Association said last week it was investigating whether to file a collusion grievance against teams for not pursuing Bonds, who became a free agent when the Giants decided they didn't want him back after 15 seasons.
The 43-year-old outfielder, a seven-time NL MVP, says he wants to play this year and his agent claims no team has made an offer for the 14-time All-Star. Bonds hit 28 homers last year to raise his total to 762, seven more than Hank Aaron's previous record.