O.J. Simpson a suspect in casino hotel confrontation

Investigators questioned O.J. Simpson and named him a suspect Friday in an alleged confrontation at a Las Vegas casino hotel room involving sports memorabilia.

Investigators questioned O.J. Simpson and named him a suspect Fridayin a confrontationat a casino hotel room involving sports memorabilia.

The former football star said he went to the room to retrieve property he said had been stolen from him but denied breaking in.

Las Vegas Police Capt. James Dillon said the confrontation was reported as an armed robbery.

"We have reported from the victim that there were weapons involved," Dillon said, but he added that no weapons had been recovered and stressed that the investigation was in its "infancy."

No charges had been filed and no one was in custody, he said.

"Mr. Simpson is co-operating," Dillon said."He is meeting with Las Vegas robbery detectives at this time."

The Heisman Trophy winner, ex-NFL star and actoris under norestrictions and can leave Las Vegas at any time, he said.

Simpson told the Associated Press thatauction house owner Tom Riccio called him several weeks ago to say some collectors "have a lot of your stuff and they don't want anyone to know they are selling it."

Simpson, who was in Las Vegas for a friend's wedding, said he arranged to meet Riccio at the hotel and conducted a "sting operation."

"Everybody knows this is stolen stuff," Simpson said. "Not only wasn't there a break-in, but Riccio came to the lobby and escorted us up to the room. In any event, it's stolen stuff that's mine. Nobody was roughed up."

A message left for Riccio was not immediately returned.

Simpsonlives near Miami and has been a tabloid staple since his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend Ron Goldman were killed in 1994.

Simpson was acquitted of murder charges, but a jury later held him liable for the killings in a wrongful death lawsuit.

Simpson has had to auction off his sports collectibles, including his Heisman Trophy, to pay some of the $33.5-million judgment awarded to the Goldman family.

Goldmans buy rights to book

On Thursday, the family published a book about the killings that Simpson had written under the title, If I Did It. After a deal for Simpson to publish it fell through, the family bought the rights and retitled the book If I Did It: The Confessions of a Killer.

Investigators in the casino case planned to give their report to prosecutors Friday, Montoya said. The district attorney's office will decide whether to pursue charges.

Simpson had been scheduled to give a deposition Friday in Miami in a bankruptcy case involving his eldest daughter. But it was rescheduled because Simpson had told attorneys that he would be out of town.

The Palace Station, an aging property just west of the Las VegasStrip, is one of several Station Casinos-owned resorts that cater to locals. The 1,000-room hotel-casino, with a 21-storey tower and adjacent buildings, opened in 1976.