Report: Mastro Will Plead Guilty

Thursday was a busy day in an Illinois federal courtroom.  Government prosecutors who have charged four former Mastro Auctions officials with fraud filed several motions with the court, including papers that would indicate former company president Bill Mastro will plead guilty in the case.

The hearing was proposed for February, at which time it’s expected Mastro will follow through on what his attorney said last summer were plans to cooperate fully with the government.

At issue are what prosecutors says is a series of deceptive practices, including so-called “shill-bidding,” designed to inflate prices paid by bidders and to protect the Bill Mastrointerests of consignors and sellers at the expense of unwitting bidders.

Among other things, Mastro is also accused of trimming the borders of the hobby’s most well-known card, the PSA 8-graded T206 Honus Wagner and not informing bidders of his actions when the card was up for sale.

In July, the government handed down a 33-page indictment against Mastro and his company after a lengthy investigation.

The New York Daily News has more on the latest developments in the case.