Hamilton says Armstrong’s lawyers tried to get him not to testify against Texan
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Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Hamilton says Armstrong’s lawyers tried to get him not to testify against Texan

by Shane Stokes at 6:43 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping
 
Suggestions Floyd Fairness Fund received money from Tailwind Sports investors

Tyler HamiltonFormer US Postal Service rider Tyler Hamilton has said that legal representatives of Lance Armstrong sought to influence him prior to his giving evidence, with last-minute representation made to his lawyer last year.

The now-retired rider wrote about the statement in his new autobiography ‘The Secret Race,’ saying that shortly before he testified to the Grand Jury, that his attorney received “a series of urgent calls from Lance’s lawyers who were offering their services for free.”

“For six years he gives me zero support,” he said. “Now, when things get tough, he wants us on the same team again. No thanks.”

In May 2011, Hamilton admitted doping on the 60 Minutes programme and said that Armstrong and others on the former US Postal Service team also used banned substances. The two subsequently had a confrontation in the Cache Cache restaurant in Aspen, Armstrong apparently being told of Hamilton’s meal booking by the owners, who personally know him.

He flew in from out of town and, according to Hamilton, challenged him there about his plans to testify. “When you're on the witness stand, we are going to f**ing tear you apart,” he wrote, “you are going to look like an f***ing idiot.”

As witness tampering is a federal offence, agents travelled to Aspen to determine what had happened. The restaurant owners claimed that the video camera in the area in question was not functional, and that no footage was available.

If Hamilton’s account of Armstrong’s lawyers’ approaches is correct, the Texan’s approach changed dramatically as the Grand Jury testimony approached.

Meanwhile Utsandiego.com has reported that the Floyd Fairness Fund set up by Floyd Landis to help his fight against 2006 Tour de France doping charges included big-money backers with links to Armstrong.

It states that at least four were investors in Tailwind Sports, ‘including a reported $50,000 donation from founder and chairman Thomas Weisel.’

Tailwind Sports was the company which owned the U.S. Postal Service and Discovery Channel teams. Armstrong had a stake in it, although he later denied this as federal investigators looked into his role in the team’s alleged doping.

Had Landis not fought the Tour de France case and instead admitted doping, it is conceivable that his claims of US Postal Service doping practices could have been made years earlier than the 2010 declaration. The implication is that any Tailwind sports assistance with his fund may have been to limit the chances of that happening.

Late last month Landis agreed to a deal with federal prosecutors. He avoided a jail term on wire fraud charges linked to the fund in return for a commitment to pay back those who contributed.

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