Cleveland Browns linebacker Mychael Kendricks has been released by the Browns after being charged with insider trading.
Cleveland has released linebacker Mychal Kendricks after he was indicted on insider trading charges on Wednesday, the team announced.
"Prior to signing Mychal, we were informed that there was a financial situation that he had been involved with in 2014. We were told Mychal had fully cooperated with investigators as a victim. From what was communicated at that time and based on the numerous questions we asked and further due diligence on our part, including checking with the league office, there was no information discovered that conveyed otherwise," Browns general manager John Dorsey said in a statement.
Dorsey added: "Recently, we were provided an update on the matter and the circumstances have changed. We are now dealing with a different set of facts and the additional information we’ve gathered has led us to the decision to release Mychal from our team. Due to the ongoing legal nature of this situation, we will have no further comments."
Kendricks and Black-ish TV writer Damilare Sonoiki have been indicted on insider trading charges pertaining to investments made four years ago. The criminal charges were announced by U.S. Attorney William McSwain.
According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, Kendricks's attorney said the former Eagles player is expected to plead guilty. He reportedly made a profit of about $1.2 million by reportedly paying Sonoiki in cash as well as with Philadelphia Eagles tickets.
Kendricks released the following statement:
"I apologize. Four years ago, I participated in insider trading, and I deeply regret it. I invested money with a former friend of mine who I thought I could trust and who I greatly admired. His background as a Harvard graduate and an employee of Goldman Sachs gave me a false sense of confidence. To that point, I had worked my tail off since I was 5 years old to become the football player that I am today. I was drawn in by the allure of being more than just a football player. While I didn't fully understand all of the details of the illegal trades, I knew it was wrong, and I wholeheartedly regret my actions. Since the beginning of the investigation, I have fully cooperated with all of the authorities and will continue to do so. I accept full responsibility for my actions. Although I did not take any of the profits for myself, I am committed to repaying all of the funds gained illegally and accept the consequences of my actions. I sincerely apologize to my coaches, the owners, and my teammates on the Eagles and the Browns, the NFL, and the magnificent fans to whom I owe my career. I also apologize to my family, who I have failed in this. You all deserve better, and I will work my hardest to re-earn your trust and respect, serve as an advocate to educate others, and show you that I will never be involved in anything like this again. Thank you for your time and hopefully your forgiveness."
Kendricks was taken by the Eagles in the second round of the 2012 NFL draft before being released by Philadelphia in May. Last season, he recorded 77 combined tackles and two sacks in 15 games.