MLB News Story - Pirates pitcher Vazquez faces more child sex-related charges

 
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Pirates pitcher Vazquez faces more child sex-related charges

(AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

GREENSBURG, Pa. (AP) Suspended Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Felipe Vazquez is facing additional charges stemming from an alleged illegal sexual relationship with an underage girl.

Authorities in Westmoreland County filed 21 new charges against Vazquez on Tuesday, including 10 counts of child pornography and 10 counts of unlawful sexual contact with a minor. The 28-year-old already was facing charges including statutory sexual assault, unlawful contact with a minor and corruption of minors.

Common Pleas Court Judge Rita Hathaway denied a request to extradite Vazquez to Florida, where he also faces charges stemming from his relationship with the girl, who moved from Pennsylvania to Florida after the relationship began. The Venezuelan-born Vazquez was denied bail by District Judge Charles Moore out of concerns he may be a flight risk. He remains in custody in Westmoreland County Prison. A formal arraignment is scheduled for Jan. 22.

Vazquez was arrested in September after allegedly telling investigators he attempted to have sex with an underage girl during a meeting at her house in an eastern Pittsburgh suburb in 2017. Police confiscated two electronic devices from Vazquez at the time of his arrest. The criminal complaint outlining the additional charges filed Tuesday said authorities found visual images of a girl in "various stages of nudity" on the devices.

Pennsylvania authorities began investigating the All-Star closer in August after being contacted by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. The girl's mother contacted Florida officials after learning of an alleged sexual relationship between Vazquez and the teenager living in Lee County.

Major League Baseball placed Vazquez on administrative leave under its agreement with the players' association on handling domestic violence, sexual assault and child abuse.

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Updated November 19, 2019

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