OJ Simpson granted parole after botched robbery

Saturday, 22 Jul, 2017

He remained largely out of the headlines until his arrest over his involvement in the armed robbery of two sports memorabilia dealers in a Las Vegas hotel room in 2007.

OJ Simpson, the former National Football League star famously acquitted of murder but later jailed for a doomed bid to retrieve sports memorabilia that he said belonged to him, is expected be a free man soon.

Simpson spoke before a parole board on Thursday, he made a claim that raised a whole lot of eyebrows.

Simpson has told a Nevada parole board that he is sorry "that things turned out the way they did" and had no intent to commit a crime.

Thomas Scotto, a friend of Simpson's for over 20 years, lives in East Naples and has offered to share his home with Simpson upon his release.

"You are low risk to re-offend on our guidelines", parole board member Tony Corda said.

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He was convicted in 2007, and was sentenced to 9-33 years in prison.

The former National Football League star and celebrity made his case via teleconference from the medium security prison to the board, stationed in Carson City, for about 30 minutes before the decision came down. I think if you talk to the wardens they'll tell you. I did my time, I tried to be helpful to everybody. He had gone there to take back what he says was his property. I'd like to get back to my family and friends -- believe it or not I do have some real friends.

Simpson's eldest child, 48-year-old Arnelle Simpson, also testified on his behalf, saying her father is not ideal but realises what a mistake he made and has spent years paying for it. Simpson admitted during the hearing that he had been drinking the day of the incident, but said he never has had an alcohol problem.

As the hearing wound down, Simpson was asked to make a final statement. "I was always a good guy, but I could have been a better Christian".

The parole board delivered their verdict after just 30 minutes; Simpson smiled and repeatedly thanked them.

"He is not the ideal man", she admits, but says that her father "truly is remorseful". Simpson was famously acquitted of the crime but lost a multimillion-dollar civil lawsuit brought by the family of Ron Goldman.