Wife of Pirates Prospect Arrested for Kidnapping

Chuck Finder, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, March 25, 2009

Pirates minor-leaguer Jose Tabata was interviewed by the Manatee County Sheriffs Department here Tuesday night in connection with the kidnapping of a 2-month-old girl in which his wife was arrested that night. She was held for jail on a $750,000 bond after a first-appearance hearing this morning.

Department spokesman Dave Bristow said Tabata came to the sheriffs’ south Bradenton headquarters “shortly after this ordeal started” late Tuesday afternoon to answer questions from officers, with a Spanish-speaking officer present because Tabata, 20, from Venezuela, has some difficulty with English.

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“We’re not going to get into what they told us,” Bristow said, also referring to hours-long interviews with Amalia Tabata Perreira Tabata, 43. She was arrested Tuesday night on charges of false imprisonment and interfering with child custody more than 24 hours after Sandra Cruz-Francisco was taken in Plant City, Fla.–56 miles northeast of here–after the baby’s mother reported that a woman posing as an agent for the federal immigration agency took the child. Bristow added, “It’s not our investigation. We passed on our information to the Plant City folks.”

Tabata, whom Hillsborough County records show married Perreira in January 2008 while a former Class A Tampa player in the New York Yankees organization, was traded to the Pirates last July in the Xavier Nady-Damaso Marte deadline deal. {snip}

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