Earlier on Thursday, it was reported that Miami Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria has a “handshake agreement” to sell his franchise for a whopping $1.6 billion.
Now comes a report that there is a potential problem with the sale, and one of the buyers — Charles Kushner — has close ties to President Donald Trump and the White House.
According to Darren Rovell of ESPN, multiple sources have said that Kushner, Ivanka Trump’s father-in-law, is part of the group that wants to purchase the Marlins. It is unknown if Kushner, the father of White House senior adviser Jared Kushner, would be the primary owner or just an investor.
According to Scott Soshnick and Joshua Green of Bloomberg, “the Kushner family” is bidding for the Marlins, suggesting other members of the family may be involved also.
While the link to the White House would certainly raise eyebrows, according to Major League Baseball, there may be a problem with the potential sale that might have nothing to do with Kushner.
In a statement, MLB said it has not been told about any potential sale, and rules state that they are supposed to be informed, even if there are just “conversations.”
“Under Major League Baseball rules, the Commissioner’s Office must be informed of any conversations about a potential sale,” Major League Baseball said in the statement. “The Commissioner’s Office has not heard directly or indirectly of any conversation involving Charles Kushner.”
Charles Kushner’s past legal problems would also be ripe for scrutiny in any potential deal. In 2005, he was sentenced to two years in prison after pleading guilty to 18 counts of tax evasion, providing illegal campaign donations, and witness tampering.
Loria bought the Marlins in 2002 for $158 million. If the Marlins do sell for $1.6 billion, it would be the second-biggest sale price for an MLB team, behind only the Dodgers, which were sold for $2 billion.
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