“The defense rests,” attorney Allen Ruby told the jury in the court of U.S. District Judge Susan Illston.
Ruby had told Illston on Tuesday afternoon that Bonds’ attorneys were considering calling up to six witnesses, including possibly Bonds himself.
Closing arguments in the trial, which is in its third week, are now scheduled to begin at 8:30 a.m. on Thursday. Jury deliberations could begin as soon as Thursday afternoon.
The defense decision to rest its case came after Illston dismissed one of five criminal charges against the former San Francisco Giants slugger.
Bonds, 46, still faces three counts of making false statements and one count of obstructing justice in 2003 testimony before a federal grand jury.
The grand jury was investigating the distribution of steroids and other performance-enhancing drugs by the Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative, or BALCO.
The dismissed count was a charge that Bonds lied when he told the panel he had never taken anything other than vitamins from his trainer, Greg Anderson, before the 2003 Major League Baseball season.
Defense attorneys argued in a motion filed Tuesday that while Bonds admitted to the grand jury that he took substances known as “the clear” and “the cream” in 2003, there was no evidence in the trial that he received them from Anderson before that year.
Prosecutors told Illston this morning that they agreed to drop that charge, and Illston then dismissed it.
“The clear” and “the cream” were so-called designer steroids that were engineered to be undetectable. Bonds told the grand jury that he thought they were flaxseed oil and an arthritis ointment.
The three remaining false-statements counts against Bonds allege that he lied when he told the grand jury he never knowingly received steroids from Anderson, never knowingly received human growth hormone from him and never received any kind of injection from him.
Anderson refused to testify at the trial and has been jailed for contempt of court until the trial ends.
While playing for the Giants, Bonds set baseball’s single-season home-run record in 2001 and the career home-run record in his last season in 2007.
9:47 AM: In a surprise move, defense lawyers told the federal judge presiding over the perjury trial of Barry Bonds in San Francisco today that they will rest their case without calling any witnesses.
Defense attorney Allen Ruby told U.S. District Judge Susan Illston, “The defense is prepared to rest.”
Closing arguments in the trial, now in its third week, are now scheduled for 8:30 a.m. Thursday.
The defense decision to rest its case came after Illston dismissed one of four perjury counts pending against Bonds.
The charge was challenged by defense attorneys and prosecutors agreed today to dismiss it.
Bonds still faces three other counts of making false statements and one count of obstructing justice in 2003 testimony before a federal grand jury that was investigating the distribution of steroids and other performance-enhancing drugs.
Julia Cheever, Bay City News