Judge denies motion to drop charges in corruption case against ex-Adidas execs, agent

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U.S. District Court Judge Lewis A. Kaplan on Thursday denied a motion to dismiss federal criminal charges against three of the 10 men arrested for their alleged roles in the FBI’s two-year investigation into college basketball corruption.

Attorneys representing former Adidas executives James Gatto and Merl Code and former sports agent Christian Dawkins argued in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York on Thursday morning that what their clients are accused of doing — allegedly funneling money from Adidas to the families of high-profile recruits to ensure that the players signed with Adidas-sponsored schools and then Adidas and certain sports agents and financial planners once they turned pro — doesn’t constitute a federal crime.

Their attorneys also challenged the government’s argument that the victims in the case are the universities where the players signed, because the players certified that they were eligible to play when they weren’t, after they or their families accepted improper benefits.

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