Bonds mistress labeled gold-digger, liar

Kimberly Bell testified for most of the day on Monday at the Barry Bonds criminal trial and first took the stand and made headlines when she said under oath that Bonds had used steroids. She then went on to answer prosecution questions about Bonds’ physical and emotional changes that could possibly be associated with steroid use.

Kim Bell didn’t disappoint the media who was standing by when she spoke about testicles, acne and hair loss but then Bonds’ lawyers got their turn to break down the testimony. When prosecution witnesses make accusations about a defendant like Bonds, the defense proposes alternative facts as reasons for the actions of their client. Contradictions in previous witness testimony or public statements are used to attack their credibility and then the character of the witness is fair game as well meaning Bell would be coming face-to-face with this strategy.

One of Bonds’ attorneys is Cristina Arguedas, defense litigator extraordinaire who then made it her business to make the ex-mistress Bell look like a gold-digging, lying bitter ex whose testimony is tainted by her decision to benefit monetarily from telling her story.

In their efforts to portray Bell in that fashion, the defense combed through loan docs for the home in Arizona that she purchased with money from Bonds. Arguedas pointed out that in answer to a question about where that money had come from, Bell earlier credited her parents and not Bonds meaning; she’s a liar.

Kim Bell’s answer to that was that she did what Bonds asked her to do meaning money given to her was then given to her parents to be returned as a “gift”. Arguedas fired back that prosecutors could have made a case out of her fraudulent loan documents but chose not to in order to have Bell’s accusations against Bonds in the trial.

Bell also retained representation for a book deal and other endeavors including a Playboy shoot that went bad. Bell was asked about whether the book was just a tell-all to smear Bonds and she responded that it was not; that it was supposed to be about her life’s journey, warts and all.

Unfortunately for Bell, she had hired a ghost writer who pumped up the sass about the salacious facts, giving Ms. Arguedas the ability to point out where Bell was making statements on the stand that contradicted the book.

The working titles for the proposed book were “Shadow of a Giant” and “Giant Mistake” and Bell said the draft only contained two sentences out of 72 pages about steroids. Bell identified the ghost writer as Aphrodite Jones who was introduced to her by her lawyers and (or) agents. The defense team questioned why those portions weren’t flagged by Bell and omitted from drafts. Connections were made between her efforts to make money and support herself and her appearances on TV and radio talk shows that supposedly played up sensationalized information about Bonds. Again, Arguedas was seeking the attention of the jury to label Bell as a gold-digger.

Uncomfortable Q&A ensued about Bell writing that Bonds’ testicles shrank to half their size. Bell is not a medical expert and admitted she wasn’t sure of the exact amount of shrinkage.

The defense brought up other women that Bonds was said to have intimate relationships during the time he was allegedly juicing it up and suffering from side effects that included sexual dysfunction. Bell was asked how she could explain his ability to spread his favors around if he was unable to perform but Bell couldn’t.

It was a long day for Kimberly Bell and both sides have to be satisfied with how they executed their plan of attack. The prosecution got the jury to hear the steroid admission and the testimony about his body changes while the defense got to point out that Bell isn’t the most trustworthy witness and she was out to make a living off the shrunken body parts and acne back of Barry Bonds.

Used with permission of the author.

Paula Duffy is a national sports columnist for Examiner.com and the Huffington Post and regularly comments on sports/legal matters for radio affiliates of ESPN and Fox Sports. She founded the sports information site, Incidental Contact, is the author of a line of audio books designed for sports novices and in her spare time practices law in Los Angeles.

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