Did Ippei Mizuhara Graduate Or Attend UC Riverside?

Originally published by DodgerBlue.com

Ippei Mizuhara has regularly found himself in the public spotlight since becoming Shohei Ohtani’s interpreter with the Los Angeles Angels in 2018, but an alleged illegal gambling scandal is bringing about unprecedented scrutiny.

The Los Angeles Dodgers fired Mizuhara last week, shortly after ESPN and the Los Angeles Times published separate accounts that detailed his betting activity. Mizuhara’s gambling came to light amid a federal investigation into Southern California bookie Mathew Bowyer, which purportedly turned up wire transfers from a bank account in Ohtani’s name.

Mizuhara was born in Japan but moved to the greater Los Angeles area in 1991. He graduated from Diamond Bar High School in 2003 and in available public bios, Mizuhara then has been reported as graduating from University of California, Riverside, in 2007.

However, UC Riverside has refuted the notion that Mizuhara graduated from the university, much less was even a student, per Helen Jeong of NBC Los Angeles:

While some reports indicated Mizuhara graduated from UC Riverside, a spokesperson from the university told NBCLA there are no records of him attending the school.

The Boston Red Sox have also disputed a fact found in Mizuhara’s public biography of having worked for the team as an interpreter for Hideki Okajima.

“Please know that we have thoroughly checked our files to ensure we are providing accurate information,” the Red Sox mentioned in their statement.

What is known about Mizuhara is he first befriended Ohtani in 2013 when working as a translator for English-speaking players on the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters. Ohtani joined the team that same year.

Mizuhara and Ohtani went on to form a strong friendship that transcended beyond normal duties of an interpreter. That level of comfortability arguably led to unchecked access for Mizuhara, which in turn may have resulted in stealing millions from Ohtani, as his representatives have alleged.

Ippei Mizuhara investigation includes IRS

Along with MLB launching their inquiry, Mizuhara is also under criminal investigation by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

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