Phil Mickelson watches hit tee shot on the first hole during round-robin play at the Dell Match Play on March 24, 2016.
AP Photo/Eric Gay
By GOLF WIRE
Wednesday, March 30, 2016

The California man who last year pleaded guilty to a money-laundering operation with a reported link to Phil Mickelson is changing course.

Gregory Silveira of La Quinta, California, filed a court motion on Tuesday to withdraw his guilty plea from the money-laundering case because his new lawyer said his client received bad advice from his original attorney, James D. Henderson Sr.

This is according to court documents obtained by ESPN.

In June 2015, Silveira, a 57-year-old former sports-gambling handicapper, pleaded guilty to three counts of laundering funds of nearly $3 million from an unnamed gambling client that ESPN's Outside the Lines reported was Mickelson. The transactions reportedly occurred between February 2010 and February 2013.

Mickelson's attorney declined to comment on the case to ESPN. Mickelson has not been charged with a crime and is not under federal investigation.

James T. Duff, Silveira's new attorney, stated in the court filing Tuesday that the money his client transferred was "a personal favor to an individual who did not wish his wagering activity to become public," adding that he paid a friend's gambling debt with legally earned money.

The filing read:

"Silveira's original counsel had told him that the money Silveira received from the gambler was 'tainted' and that Silveira's transfer of those funds constituted money laundering. This advice was incorrect."

Silveira was scheduled to be sentenced on Monday.

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