fb-pixel Skip to main content

What’s next for Robert Kraft?

What’s next for Robert Kraft, the billionaire owner of the New England Patriots who was recently charged with two misdemeanor counts of soliciting prostitution at a Florida spa?Jim Davis/Globe Staff/file 2017/Globe Staff

So what’s next for Robert Kraft, the billionaire owner of the New England Patriots who was recently charged with two misdemeanor counts of soliciting prostitution at a Florida spa?

Kraft, through a spokesperson, has denied engaging in illegal activity, but local cops say his alleged misdeeds were captured on video. Here’s a primer on what lies ahead for the 77-year-old sports and business icon:

The legal front — According to court records, Kraft has an arraignment scheduled at a Florida courthouse on April 24. But he may not have to show up. A West Palm Beach criminal attorney with experience handling similar cases told the Globe that defense lawyers can sometimes secure dismissals without defendants appearing in court.


If convicted, Kraft faces a maximum one-year jail term on each count, as well as community service, a $5,000 fine, and a mandatory class on the effects of human trafficking, prosecutors say. However, jail terms of any length for a first offense are extremely rare.

Possible league discipline — Kraft also faces potential sanctions from the NFL. Per the league’s code of conduct, “It is not enough simply to avoid being found guilty of a crime. We are all held to a higher standard and must conduct ourselves in a way that is responsible, promotes the values of the NFL, and is lawful.”

The policy also states, “Ownership and club or league management have traditionally been held to a higher standard and will be subject to more significant discipline when violations of the Personal Conduct Policy occur.”

Colts owner Jim Irsay got hit with a six-game suspension in 2014 after pleading guilty in an impaired driving case. He admitted to driving under the influence of oxycodone and hydrocodone at the time of his arrest. Various prescription drugs were found in his vehicle, along with more than $29,000 in cash.


Public appearances — Many celebrities keep a low profile amid a scandal. Will Kraft follow suit?

He was spotted in California over the weekend on the Oscars pre-party circuit, hobnobbing at gatherings hosted by TV mogul Barry Diller in Beverly Hills and an earlier bash hosted by billionaire Ronald Perelman, according to reports from TMZ and Page Six.

The NFL’s annual league meeting, a busy four-day event where team executives hash out possible rule changes and other issues, is slated for March 24 through March 27 in Phoenix. Kraft has given no indication, since word of the charges broke, whether he plans to attend the confab.

He’s also scheduled in June to receive one of Israel’s highest honors, the Genesis Prize, from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. He hasn’t indicated whether he’ll honor that commitment.

The prize is awarded by the Genesis Prize Foundation, which heaped praise on Kraft in a January announcement naming him as a winner. Kraft remained prominently featured on the group’s homepage Tuesday morning.

The foundation noted in January that Kraft, “keeping with the Genesis Prize tradition . . . has chosen to forgo the $1 million monetary award so that funds can be granted, in his honor, to initiatives combatting anti-Semitism and other forms of prejudice as well as attempts to de-legitimize the State of Israel.”

Larry Summers, a former Harvard president and US treasury secretary who sits on the Genesis Prize Committee, lauded Kraft in a January statement for his “extraordinary vision and leadership” and for bringing “enthusiasm and pride to the world of sports. His compassionate philanthropy and the charitable programs funded by the New England Patriots touch many lives in the United States and Israel.”


Material from the Associated Press was used in this report. Ben Volin, Bob Hohler and John R. Ellement of the Globe Staff also contributed. Travis Andersen can be reached at travis.andersen@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @TAGlobe.