Back To The Bounty Story: Possible Legal Ramifications?

Apologies if it seems like this is turning into Bounty Central, but hey. . .there's a dearth of news on the Vikings front at the moment, and this is a relatively big story.

Our friends at SI.com have put together a story on some of the potential legal ramifications of what has gone on with this particular story. A couple of these things are particularly interesting. First, there's the matter of potential tax evasion when it comes to the various "bounties" that were doled out.

Players who received bounty payments should have reported them as taxable income; even if the payments arose because of criminal activity, such "ill gotten gains" are taxable. Failure to pay one's full share of taxes constitutes tax evasion. The IRS and Louisiana Department of Revenue are likely following the bounty system scandal with a watchful eye.

It may seem like a stretch, to be sure, but remember what they always say about tax evasion. . .that's how they got Al Capone.

The more interesting one is the possibility of second-degree battery charges being filed, should a player choose to file them.

It is even possible that a Saints player could be charged with second degree battery. This is a more serious type of battery, which carries a potential five-year prison sentence and which refers to intentionally inflicting serious bodily injury. Under Louisiana law, "serious bodily injury" refers to causing another person extreme physical pain, unconsciousness, or risk of death. A bounty to injure someone so seriously that he's carted off the field arguably rises to second degree battery.

There is a three years statute of limitation for battery charges, which means that bounties -- which took place over the last three seasons -- occurred recently-enough for criminal prosecution.

Now, as the article says, it's not often that players would file a lawsuit for on-field injuries and things of that nature. . .but, you know, I can't help but wonder if a Mr. B. Favre of Hattiesburg, Mississippi would be interested in such a thing. After all, he's officially retired now, so he's got plenty of spare time. Personally, I know that if one of my opponents threw $10,000 on the table and said, "This goes to whoever takes this guy out," I might be inclined to take my chances in a court of law with that. I'm aware of what he said a couple of days after the 2009 NFC Championship Game. . .but maybe learning that somebody put a bounty on his head would change his tune a bit.

Just throw it on the pile, I guess. And what a pile it is.

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