Miami Marlins

Ex-Marlins standout Luis Castillo cited as part of reported drug trafficking network

Marlins great Luis Castillo poses for a photo at the MLB All-Star Futures Game at Marlins Park on Sunday, July 9, 2017.
Marlins great Luis Castillo poses for a photo at the MLB All-Star Futures Game at Marlins Park on Sunday, July 9, 2017. BCereijo@MiamiHerald.com

Former Miami Marlins second baseman Luis Castillo was one of two former Major League baseball players cited on Tuesday as being involved in a reported drug trafficking scheme in their native Dominican Republic in what the country’s attorney general’s office is calling the “largest operation against organized crime” in the country.

According to cdn.com, Dominican authorities claim Castillo, 43, and Octavio Dotel, 45, were linked to a drug trafficking and money laundering network led by Cesar Emilio Peralta. Dotel was arrested. Castillo as of now has not been.

Dominican Republic newspaper Diario Libre reported that Castillo and Dotel are two of more than 15 people they have found in connection to a network headed by Peralta, who according to attorney general Jean Alain Rodriguez used the baseball players among others to help funnel drugs from the Dominican Republic to the United States.

Castillo, in a post on his Instagram account, denied his involvement.

“Only God knows the truth,” Castillo wrote in Spanish.

Officials raided five nightclubs, 10 restaurants, three shopping malls, six shopping centers and more than 20 apartment buildings belonging to Peralta.

Peralta also was not captured in the raids. Authorities are still looking for four other people in addition to Peralta.

Castillo made his MLB debut with the Florida Marlins in August 1996 and ultimately played nine more seasons in South Florida before stints with the Minnesota Twins (2006-2007) and New York Mets (2007-2010) to close out his career.

The switch-hitting second baseman still holds Marlins franchise records for games played (1,128), at-bats (4,347), runs scored (675), hits (1,273), triples (42), walks (533), stolen bases (281) and sacrifice bunts (65).

He was a starter for the Marlins’ 2003 World Series team and a three-time All-Star (2002, 2003, 2005).

Castillo was part of the Marlins’ throwback weekend festivities last month, throwing out the first pitch on July 27 against the Arizona Diamondbacks.

When asked about Castillo’s situation, the Marlins had no comment.

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Jordan McPherson covers the Miami Marlins and high school sports for the Miami Herald. He attended the University of Florida and covered the Gators athletic program for five years before joining the Herald staff in December 2017.
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