Patriots, ‘Overwatch’ League Team Owner Robert Kraft Charged in Human Trafficking Case

Robert Kraft, owner of the New England Patriots and Overwatch League team Boston Uprising, is one of more than two dozen charged Friday with soliciting prostitutes in connection with a sweeping nearly year-long investigation into human trafficking across South Florida, police said.

Kraft, 77, faces two counts of soliciting another to commit prostitution according to Jupiter police chief Daniel Kerr. Those charges arise out of two different visits to the Orchids of Asia Day Spa in Jupiter, Florida about a month ago. The sex acts were captured on surveillance video, according to Kerr. Kraft has not yet been arrested.

A spokesperson for Kraft denied the allegations. The NFL sent the following to Variety: “The NFL is aware of the ongoing law enforcement matter and will continue to monitor developments.”

The charges come out of an eight-month investigation into five spas which investigators are now saying were run by two women as part of sexual trafficking operations. The women at the spa, many of which were from China, were sleeping on their massage tables, cooking on the back steps, and were not allowed to leave. They averaged eight clients a day, according to police, WPTV reports.

The crimes are considered a second-degree misdemeanor with up to 60 days in prison on a first offense. A second offense bumps it up to a first-degree misdemeanor with up to a year in prison.

Kraft was an instrumental player in the launch of Activision Blizzard’s Overwatch League. His buy-in to the esports league helped convince others to invest in teams for the popular franchise. Kraft was among those quoted when the first wave of Overwatch League team owners were announced. At the time he said he had been exploring the esports market for several years and waiting for the right opportunity to enter.

“The incredible global success of ‘Overwatch’ since its launch, coupled with the league’s meticulous focus on a structure and strategy that clearly represents the future of esports made this the obvious entry point for the Kraft Group,” Kraft said in a statement at the time.


More Gaming

  • Fortnite Battle Royale

    How 'Fortnite' Fans Can Earn Loot by Watching YouTube Videos

    Epic Games and YouTube have teamed up with a special offer for “Fortnite” players — giving players of the popular battle-royale game rewards when they watch “Fortnite”-premiered content on the video platform. The catch: You have to watch at least 20 minutes of “Fortnite” special content or live esports broadcasts to receive the loot. Under [...]

  • Google Stadia Pro to Include 1

    Google’s Stadia Game Streaming Service to Include Free Monthly Game

    Google has been busy sharing additional details about its upcoming game streaming service Stadia, clearing up some confusion in the process. Stadia’s pro subscription tier, which will cost $10 per month, won’t be a Netflix-type subscription service. However, subscribers will get free games at the rate of about a title per month. That’s according to [...]

  • The Lion King

    'Lion King' VFX Supervisor Rob Legato to Keynote at the 2019 View Conference

    Rob Legato, visual effects supervisor of “The Lion King,” “The Addams Family” co-director Conrad Vernon and Baobab Studios’ co-founder and chief creative officer Eric Darnell, director of the VR studio’s Emmy- and Annie-winning VR short “Crow: The Legend,” are rounding out the keynote speakers at this fall’s 20th edition of the View Conference in Turin, [...]

  • Nintendo Switch

    Nintendo Releases Updated Switch With Better Battery

    Nintendo just refreshed its wildly successful Switch game console, but the company isn’t giving existing Switch owners many reasons to upgrade: The renewed game console comes with a better battery that guarantees up to 9 hours of game play, while otherwise sticking with the same design and features of the original Switch. The new model [...]

  • Spotify logo is presented on a

    U.S. Consumers to Spend $26 Billion on Music, Video Subscriptions This Year

    U.S. consumers are expected to spend a combined $26 billion on music and video subscription services this year, according to new estimates from the Consumer Technology Association. That’s up from $20.4 billion in 2018, and nearly twice the amount spent on such services in 2017. Propelled by the continued success of Apple Music and Spotify, [...]

  • Gears 5 - Xbox Game Studios

    'Gears 5' Will Exclude Smoking Depictions After Concerns Raised by Youth Anti-Tobacco Org (EXCLUSIVE)

    “Gears 5,” the forthcoming installment in the “Gears of Wars” third-person shooter game franchise, will be a smoke-free establishment. The game, set for Sept. 10 release, comes from Xbox Game Studios and game developer The Coalition. The decision to remove all smoking references from “Gears 5” came after not-for-profit anti-smoking organization Truth Initiative approached Turner, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content