Photo: WINA

AAU Coach Admits Defrauding Former UVA Basketball Star

A former AAU coach has pleaded guilty to defrauding former UVA basketball player Travis Watson. 60-year-old Thomas P. Boggs of Brookneal was a coach and mentor to Watson. Boggs entered a guilty plea to one count of wire fraud in Lynchburg federal court. Boggs could get up to 20 years in prison when he’s sentenced. Federal prosecutor Tim Heaphy says Boggs exploited the trust placed in him by Travis Watson and turned it into a vehicle for fraud. Heaphy says Boggs stole hundreds of thousands of dollars from Watson, who considered Boggs to be a father figure. Boggs says he first met Watson when the player was a freshman in high school in Texas. After Watson left UVA, he played professional basketball in Europe. Heaphy says Boggs offered to invest part of Watson’s earnings, and he had Watson wire over $350,000 into two accounts. Heaphy says Boggs used nearly all of the money to pay personal expenses and pay Boggs’ family members.