White Sox’s Abreu to jury: I ate fake passport on way to US

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MESA, AZ - FEBRUARY 27: Jose Abreu #79 of the Chicago White Sox runs the bases after hitting a two run home run in the fifth inning of a Cactus League spring training game against Chicago Cubs on February 27, 2017 in Mesa, Arizona. (Photo by Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images)

MIAMI — Chicago White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu has told a Miami federal jury he ate a chunk of a fake passport while flying to the U.S. to cover up his illegal travel as part of a Cuban ballplayer smuggling operation.

Abreu testified Wednesday that he ordered a beer on an Air France flight from Haiti to Miami and slowly consumed the page containing a false name and his photo. Abreu says he traveled illegally because he was worried about losing the $68 million contract he later signed with Chicago.

The testimony came in the trial of agent Bartolo Hernandez and trainer Julio Estrada, who are accused of alien smuggling and conspiracy.

Abreu was American League Rookie of the Year in 2014. Last year he had 25 home runs and 100 RBIs.