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Sports agent pleads not guilty to Cuban player smuggling

MIAMI (AP) — A Florida-based sports agent has pleaded not guilty to charges of involvement in a conspiracy to illegally smuggle Cuban baseball players into the U.S.

A Miami federal magistrate judge on Monday also approved $300,000 bail allowing Bart Hernandez to be released pending trial. He is charged in a two-count indictment involving the smuggling from Cuba of Seattle Mariners outfielder Leonys Martin, who previously played for the Texas Rangers.

The bail agreement with prosecutors also permits Hernandez to travel for agent work.

Hernandez works for Praver Shapiro Sports Management, which in November announced a joint venture with Magnus Media run by entertainer Marc Antony.

Martin was the key player in an earlier indictment charging other four people with conspiring to illegally smuggle ballplayers and hundreds of other people from Cuba.

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