Like many youngsters before him, Lenny Dykstra dreamed of someday playing in the major leagues. He wanted stardom and all the financial success that came with it. In 1981, when Dykstra was drafted by the New York Mets in the 13th round, Dykstra’s dreams began to come true.
After winning the starting center fielder position in 1986, the Mets fans soon nicknamed Dykstra “Nails” for his tough-as-nails personality and fearless play. In a career that included playing four years with the Mets and seven years with the Philadelphia Phillies, Dykstra was selected to the All-stars three times, was part of a team that won the World Series in 1986, and was awarded the Silver Slugger Award in 1993.
Accused by the Mets as being on the “wild and crazy” side, Dykstra was traded to the Phillies. He became a huge Phillie’s fan favorite, but injuries eventually drove Dykstra to retire from baseball in 1997. After trying and failing to comeback in the spring of 1998, Dykstra retired from baseball for good.
Like his peers before him, Lenny Dykstra mismanaged the fortune he earned playing baseball due to a variety of financial misadventures including a car wash, stock portfolio management, and other failed ventures. During the height of his career, Dykstra bought an $18.5 million mansion in Lake Sherwood Estates which was previously owned by hockey star Wayne Gretzky and his wife and a home in Westlake Village worth $5.4 million.
In 2009, Dykstra filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection listing $50,000 in assets against $10 to $50 million in debts. It was reported in August 2009 that Dykstra was living out of his car and in hotel lobbies. In April of 2011, the U.S. Attorney’s Office accused Dykstra of embezzling from his bankruptcy estate by selling and destroying more than $400,000 worth of assets from his $18 million mansion.
A U.S. Attorney said, “according to court documents, after Dykstra filed for bankruptcy, he sold many items belonging to the bankruptcy estate for cash, as well as destroying and hiding other items. An attorney hired by the bankruptcy trustee estimated that Dykstra stole and destroyed more than $400,000 worth of property in the estate.”
Bankruptcy fraud is a crime. Criminal actions under bankruptcy laws typically involve: concealment of assets, concealment or destruction of documents, conflicts of interest, fraudulent claims, false statements or declarations, and fee fixing. Falsifications on bankruptcy forms can often constitute perjury. The new bankruptcy laws which are more generous to honest debtors do not allow bankruptcy fraud.
At this point Lenny Dykstra is only accused of bankruptcy fraud. In America, there is a presumption of innocence, and Lenny has not been tried or convicted of any crimes. Fans are hoping for the best for Lenny Dykstra.
Lenny Dykstra was a baseball icon, and he displayed amazing skill playing the great American sport. Unfortunately, he has fallen on hard times, and he now faces one of his greatest challenges in life. Our hearts and prayers go out to him and his family in the days ahead.
If hard times can come to a person like Lenny Dykstra, it can happen to anyone. Maybe you have fallen on hard financial times, and you need the advice of a bankruptcy lawyer. If you need relief from the stress associated with debt and you live in or around the metropolitan area of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, contact us at www.betterbankruptcy.com .We will help you find a bankruptcy attorney in your area who will answer your bankruptcy questions.
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