12/09/11 12:35 PM EST
Oviedo, formerly Nunez, won't face charges
Reliever arrested then released for alleged use of false documents
By Spencer Fordin / MLB.com
Oviedo, who originally signed with the Pirates as a Minor League free agent in 2000, had been using a false name for his baseball career. Authorities said Thursday that he will not face charges stemming from his use of the false documents in order to sign a pro baseball contract.
"[It was] a mixup/delay in the Dominican identity data system update," Oviedo's agent, Andy Mota, said about the arrest. "Besides fully cooperating with the authorities, J.C. has complied and completed all required steps from his end to clear up and straighten out the identity matter with the proper government branches in a timely manner."
Oviedo, 29, was arrested outside the U.S. Consulate in Santo Domingo, where he had hoped to get a new visa under his real name so he could return to the United States. Oviedo was booked at police headquarters, but he was ultimately released from custody.
Later in the day, the district attorney's office issued a statement that said the police arrest warrant was out of date and that local authorities have no intention to prosecute Oviedo because of his cooperation with the investigation. Oviedo has played under the Nunez name since 2000.
The right-handed reliever -- who pitched to a 4.06 ERA and 36 saves for the Marlins last season -- returned to his homeland in September after his team placed him on the restricted list. Oviedo was also found to be 29, a year older than he had been listed in the Marlins' media guide.
While Oviedo appears to be beyond prosecution, the case isn't over. Police have arrested Hector Pena Diaz, who is accused of falsifying Oviedo's documents. If convicted, Pena could face up to 10 years in prison. Oviedo, meanwhile, will have to be reinstated from the restricted list.
Spencer Fordin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.