No decision yet in relation to Kimmage’s criminal complaint against UCI chiefs
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Tuesday, February 5, 2013

No decision yet in relation to Kimmage’s criminal complaint against UCI chiefs

by Shane Stokes at 9:48 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping
Defence fund pays for first batch of expenses in relation to Verbruggen/McQuaid action

Paul KimmageThree months after he lodged a criminal complaint with the public prosecutor in Vevey in Switzerland, Paul Kimmage is waiting to learn whether or not that case will proceed.

The complaint was lodged against former UCI president Hein Verbruggen and his successor Pat McQuaid, who Kimmage accused of committing ‘slander/defamation, denigration and for strong suspicions of fraud.’

His lawyer Cédric Aguet lodged a 28 document complaint complete with 55 exhibits, and said at the time that he was optimistic that a quick decision would be made by the prosecutor. However Kimmage told VeloNation this week that he is still waiting for news.

“There’s still no decision,” he said. “It is very much in limbo, which is kind of surprising to me. I was initially told by Cedric that we would have a response pretty quickly but there’s no word yet.”

Last October the meantime the UCI set up an Independent Commission to look into the allegations that Verbruggen, McQuaid and others had aided Armstrong and others to evade detection, as well as other claims made in the USADA reasoned decision.

The governing body said that it was confident that the commission would determine that no fault had been committed, but last week it shelved that enquiry long before a conclusion was reached.

McQuaid claimed the decision had been taken because WADA and USADA wouldn’t cooperate with the commission, and because he now felt that a Truth and Reconciliation commission might be a better way forward.

Asked if he felt that the public prosecutor may have been waiting for the commission’s conclusion, Kimmage felt it wasn’t the case. “It seems unlikely that justice would sit around waiting for someone else to do their job for them. But maybe there is an element of waiting to see what is coming down, even if that would be surprising.”

Defence fund pays out first instalment of fees:

Kimmage was originally sued by Verbruggen and McQuaid, who initiated legal proceedings against him last January. They claimed they were defamed by articles in the Sunday Times and L’Equipe. He was later served with a summons on September 19th, compelling him to attend a trial in Switzerland on December 12th.

Under pressure due to the fact that he had no regular work for much of the year, Kimmage received an unexpected boost when a defence fund set up by the websites and received strong support from the public and people involved in the sport.

At this point in time, over $90,000 has been given to that fund. The UCI put the case on standby in late October. “It is still in suspension,” Kimmage told VeloNation. “I think initially they were going to make a decision after the commission delivered a report, but I don’t know what the thinking is now, given that commission has stopped.”

VeloNation sought an update from as regards what is the current status with the fund.

“At this time, we can report that we have disbursed monies to Paul's legal representatives in Switzerland to pay for the first batch of expenses incurred, which were significant due to the nature of the lawsuit filed by Hein Verbruggen, Pat McQuaid, and the UCI,” editor in chief Lesli Cohen and operations director Aaron Brown responded.

“The fund will remain open in order to provide continued support for Paul's defence if/when the plaintiffs reactivate their unjust pursuit. As we understand it, the lawsuit still has not been dismissed, and is on hold as of this writing. Neither Kimmage nor his legal representatives have received any additional updates to suggest that this has changed.”

They added that they were hopeful that the legal action will be ended after the recent dissolution of the UCI Independent Commission, and thanked all contributors for ‘their support and patience’.

Kimmage previously said that if the case against him continued, that he would seek to have many witnesses join him in fighting the action.


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