Pound wants UCI to refer Armstrong payments to IOC ethics committee
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Monday, August 02, 2010

Pound wants UCI to refer Armstrong payments to IOC ethics committee

by Conal Andrews at 10:00 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping
 
Former WADA chairman is suspicious and says clarification is needed

Lance ArmstrongFormer World Anti Doping Agency chief Dick Pound has called on the UCI to agree to allow the ethics committee of the International Olympic Committee to investigate donations made by Lance Armstrong during his career.

“It would be in everyone’s interest to ensure transparency and to disclose what those payments were for, why are they made, how high they were and when they were received,” Pound said on German radio, according to Reuters.

“Someone might ask the question whether it is correct that an international organization accepted such payments by one of its most important athletes?”

The Canadian was referring to money given by Armstrong to cycling’s world governing body, the UCI. The Texan’s former US Postal team-mate alleged earlier this year that Armstrong had paid off cycling officials after testing positive during the 2001 Tour de Suisse, which he won.

The UCI denied that any bribe was paid, but admits that Armstrong did hand over money in two payments, specifically in 2002 and 2005. These are said by them to have totalled €125,000, and it says that they were used for anti-doping purposes, including the purchase of a Sysmex blood-analysis machine.

Pound has criticised the UCI in the past and says now that he is not satisfied with the explanations given. “All you know is that Armstrong has made significant payments to the UCI. They do not know why, they are not quite sure when, and they do not know what were the circumstances. This is not good for any sport.”

He was critical of the Dutchman Hein Verbruggen, on the grounds that the former UCI president has suggested that Landis needs to see a psychiatrist. Pound said that this discrediting of a witness is standard practice, and that criticisms are made without the actual claims being investigated.

Landis’s allegations have resulted in a federal investigation led by Jeff Novitzky, who played a major part in the Balco inquiry. A number of Armstrong’s former team-mates are rumoured to be negotiating with Novitzky, and could end up giving evidence in the case.

Armstrong has denied Landis' claims.

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