Ex-Phillie Dykstra arrested on federal fraud charges

Former Phillie Leny Dykstra was arrested at his Encino home Thursday night on federal fraud charges and local vehicle theft charges, according to media reports.

Lenny "Nails" Dykstra "was taken into custody at his Encino home Thursday night" on federal fraud charges and local vehicle theft charges, reports the LA Times here. "The charge relates to fraud Dykstra allegedly committed involving the sale of items from a Ventura County mansion he owned.

"The federal charges stem from a bankruptcy case that Dykstra filed on July 7, 2009," accrording to the statement.  "The criminal case filed in U.S. District Court alleges that Dykstra removed, destroyed and sold property that was part of the bankruptcy estate without the permission of the bankruptcy trustee."

According to prosecutors, "Dykstra admitted in a bankruptcy hearing to having arranged the sale of sports memorabilia and a dresser that were property of the bankruptcy estate; and Dykstra “ripped out” a $50,000 sink from his mansion and took granite from the mansion and installed it in an office he set up at the Camarillo airport after he had filed for bankruptcy protection."

Dykstra sold memorabilia including his Phillies and Mets championship rings, and stands accused of trying to take some of his property back after courts had awarded it to his mortgage lender and other creditors. He has in the past said he did nothing illegal. Dykstra operated car washes, published a magazine and charged for online investment tips before he ran out of cash and filed for federal bankruptcy protection in 2009.