New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft was charged Friday with soliciting a prostitute for sex at a Florida massage parlor.
Kraft, who has owned the Patriots for 25 years, was charged following a series of raids on at least eight massage parlors on the east coast of Florida. Kraft has denied the charge, which is a misdemeanor in Florida.
Kraft, who is one of 32 people who own National Football League teams, was described by police as “a regular” at the massage parlor.
NFL players, coaches, team owners and even the league’s commissioner are subject to sanctions for misbehavior both on and off the field. Could Kraft face sanctions from the league if he is found guilty of the charge?
Article VIII of the NFL’s constitution and bylaws give Commissioner Roger Goodell the power to decide if an owner should be sanctioned for “conduct detrimental to the welfare of the League or professional football.”
The sanction could be up to a $500,000 fine.
If Goodell believes the fine is “not adequate or sufficient” as far as the misconduct is concerned, he can refer the issue to the NFL’s executive committee. The committee has the power to compel “cancellation or forfeiture of the franchise in the League of any member club involved or implicated,” with a directive to sell the team.
The NFL's executive committee is made up of the owners of all 32 NFL teams. It would take a three-quarters vote of the committee to sanction Kraft.
No NFL owner has ever been ousted.
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