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Bertuzzi's case didn't belong in court

Originally Published: December 22, 2004
By Scott Burnside | Special to ESPN.com

What a tawdry Christmas pageant this turned out to be.

In their plea deal with Vancouver Canucks forward Todd Bertuzzi, prosecutors in British Columbia made a ham-handed effort at sweeping something distasteful under the Christmas rug -- and the rug still has a handful of unpleasant lumps that simply won't go away.

In exchange for pleading guilty to assault causing bodily harm, the power forward received a conditional discharge, which will ultimately see his criminal record wiped clean ...

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