The NFL announced that Bradys jersey has been recovered after being found in the possession of an unidentified member of the international media
The jersey worn by Tom Brady during the New England Patriots remarkable comeback over the Atlanta Falcons in Super Bowl LI is missing no longer.
The NFL announced Monday in a statement that Bradys jersey has been recovered after being found in the possession of an unidentified member of the international media.
Mexican media reported the Federal Police and attorney generals office found the jersey in the suburban Mexico City home of Mauricio Ortega, previously an executive with newspaper chain Organizacin Editorial Mexicana (OEM).
The company said on Twitter that an executive from its tabloid La Prensa known for its especially bloody front-page photos was involved.
Editora La Prensa, a division of OEM, said in a statement that Ortega resigned 14 March for personal reasons and he had previously expressed domestic difficulties due to an infirm family member. The company was unaware of any ongoing investigation, but offered a public apology.
Houston police chief Art Acevedo said the departments major offenders division traced the jersey to Mexico and it was recovered with the help of the FBI and Mexican authorities.
The NFL said the jersey, which had been assigned a value of $500,000 by the Houston police, was in possession of a credentialed member of the international media.
The statement added that Bradys jersey from the Patriots Super Bowl win over the Seattle Seahawks in February 2015 was also recovered.
Through the cooperation of the NFL and New England Patriots security teams, the FBI and other law enforcement authorities, the Super Bowl LI jersey worn last month by MVP Tom Brady has been recovered, the NFL said. Also retrieved during the ongoing investigation was the jersey Brady wore in the Patriots victory in Super Bowl XLIX against the Seattle Seahawks in 2015.
The items were found in the possession of a credentialed member of the international media. Due to the ongoing investigation, we would refer any additional questions to the FBI.
The NFL has proved popular in Mexico, where it is likely the No2 sport behind football and, according to the league, its telecasts often draw as many viewers as mid-table Liga MX matches.
The Dallas Cowboys, Oakland Raiders and Pittsburgh Steelers have built big fan bases in Mexico, but the Patriots are closing in fast especially with younger fans.
Older fans like the Cowboys, Raiders and Steelers. Newer fans have Brady fever, said Esteban Illades, editor of the Mexican magazine Revista Nexos.
Brady has boasted of his friendship with US president Donald Trump, but it hasnt dented his popularity in Mexico. Sports trumps Trump, Illades said.
Brady and the Patriots are scheduled to play an international match in 2017 at the Estadio Azteca in Mexico City against the Oakland Raiders. The Mexican Tourism Secretariat has promoted the game along with last years Raiders v Houston Texans match to improve Mexicos image in the United States.
The jersey incident brought a spate of unflattering international attention to Mexico, though Illades said, Were used to being internationally embarrassed by fans at sporting events.
Theres an incident involving a Mexican at every World Cup going back to at least 1998.
He pointed to past incidents at World Cups where Mexican fans did news for all the wrong reasons and sparked international incidents like 1998, when a drunken fan urinated on and extinguished the eternal flame in Paris; and 2010, when a fan caused offense by putting a sombrero a Nelson Mandela statue; and 2014, when the son of a politician got drunk and jumped into the ocean from the top deck of a cruise ship.
Mexican social media reacted with snark to the discovery, but also uncomfortable questions such as how the FBI could find a football jersey in a foreign country, but Mexican officials could not find the 43 missing teacher trainees (disappeared in 2014 by cops acting in cahoots with criminals) or arrest a fugitive governor accused of looting the state coffers.
Shortly after the Patriots come-from-behind victory over the Falcons at Houstons NRG Stadium last month, Brady realized his jersey was taken from a bag in the locker room.
I put it in the bag, and I came out and it wasnt there any more, Brady told media the following morning. Its unfortunate because thats a nice piece of memorabilia. If it shows up on eBay somewhere, someone let me know so I can track that down.
The teams owner Robert Kraft likened the theft to taking a great Chagall or Picasso in an interview on the Fox Business Network.
Acevedo said the jerseys are in the possession of the NFL and FBI in Boston, and law enforcement was working to authenticate them.
We are highly confident that these are the jerseys, he said.