WDAE’s Sileo suspended for claims about Glazers

November 2nd, 2009 by

TAMPA (TBO)- WDAE, 620 AM, host Dan Sileo has been suspended for claims he made Thursday regarding the Glazer family, owners of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Dan Diloreto, president and market manger for Clear Channel, which owns the station, said “Dan Sileo has been suspended pending further investigation into this matter.”

Buccaneers co-chairman Joel Glazer today called a Sileo’s claim that his family lost millions in the Bernie Madoff Ponzi scheme “irresponsible” and “slanderous.”

Sileo reported this morning that the Glazer family was among the plethora of high-profile victims in the Madoff scheme and is considering bankruptcy. Sileo also said the Ponzi losses have led to the family being $650 million in debt, and he surmised the team may be for sale.

“The report today by WDAE’s Dan Sileo about our family and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers is 100 percent false,” Glazer said in a statement released by the team.

Sileo, who hosts the early morning show on WDAE, quoted a “friend” who works with the Securities and Exchange Commission as saying the Glazers lost $440 million in the Ponzi scheme.

Mike Killebrew, program director for WDAE, said that WDAE and Clear Channel Tampa will not be issuing any comment about Sileo’s remarks until they “get a handle on the situation.”

Killebrew said station officials have asked Sileo not to make any comments about the situation, as well.

Madoff is serving a 150-year prison sentence after he admitted losing billions of dollars for thousands of clients over a half-century career that saw him rise to be a Nasdaq chairman.

Sileo said the Glazers’ involvement has led them to consider bankruptcy. Sileo also gave his opinion that the team could be for sale as a result of the owners’ financial distress.

“The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are not, nor have they ever been for sale,” Glazer’s statement said. “In addition, our family or any of our related companies have never invested one penny with Bernie Madoff.

“The report is baseless, irresponsible and slanderous. This type of behavior by Mr. Sileo and his company, Clear Channel, will be dealt with in the appropriate manner.”

Sileo’s report also said the Glazers allotted only $2 million for free agent signings each season the past five years. The Bucs are $23 million below the NFL’s imposed team salary cap of $127 million.

The Bucs signed free-agent running back Derrick Ward to a reported $17 million, four-year contract in March, when they also signed kicker Mike Nugent to a one-year, $2.4 million deal and linebacker Angelo Crowell.

Nugent was released Oct. 5, while terms of Crowell’s deal were not released. Crowell is out for the season with a torn biceps muscle.

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