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Time line of Operación Puerto

Cycling News
April 30, 2013, 23:41 BST,
May 01, 2013, 0:41 BST
One of the blood bags from Fuentes' clinic

One of the blood bags from Fuentes' clinic

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The Operación Puerto case broke in the month leading up to the 2006 Tour de France with Liberty Seguros manager Manolo Saiz the first name to hit the headlines when he was arrested outside a Madrid clinic, while carrying large sums of cash. A new name suddenly arose from the chatter, that of Eufemiano Fuentes. The Spaniard would eventually be outed as a major player in helping cyclists to blood dope, and was convicted on charges of crimes against public health seven years later.

Operación Puerto was as significant, if not more so, than the 1998 Festina Affair, in that it uncovered a pervasive culture of sophisticated doping going on in professional cycling, one that would only be fully revealed when the US Anti-Doping Agency looked into Lance Armstrong and the US Postal Service team.

Only a few athletes have been punished in the Puerto case, even though Fuentes had dozens of clients. Although the anti-doping authorities are still fighting to gain access to the evidence in order to link the blood seized from Fuentes to athletes, the Spanish courts have thrown up numerous road blocks, with the latest judge ordering the evidence destroyed upon the completion of any appeals to the Fuentes verdict.


May 23, 2006: Liberty Seguros director Manolo Saiz arrested on doping charges
May 24, 2006: Spanish federation denies involvement in Saiz arrest
May 25, 2006: Liberty Seguros terminates contract
May 26, 2006: Saiz' team to continue racing, Fuentes says it was old blood, Comunidad Valenciana stays calm
May 26, 2006: Ullrich and Basso deny involvement with Fuentes
May 28, 2006: Fuentes released on bail
May 29, 2006: Ullrich talks, Jaksche unsure as to future
May 30, 2006: Sevilla admits to visiting the lab
June 1, 2006: Comunidad Valenciana DS resigns
June 2, 2006: Phonak sidelines Botero and Gutierrez
June 2, 2006: AIGCP asks Saiz and Labarta to resign
June 3, 2006: Sevilla declares his innocence, Sáiz's team becomes Astana-Würth
June 7, 2006: Interviú publishes Fuentes' drug list
June 9, 2006: Saiz steps aside
June 13, 2006: Comunidad Valenciana's Tour invite withdrawn
June 22, 2006: Astana-Würth OK for ProTour licence
June 26, 2006: Hamilton and Ullrich linked to Operación Puerto
June 26, 2006: Spanish media uncover Operación Puerto investigation details, Spanish championships not ridden after rider protest
June 27, 2006: Tour organisers confirm Astana withdrawal request
June 28, 2006: Ullrich Tour okay
June 29, 2006: More names released in Operación Puerto, Astana-Würth OK to race Tour
June 30, 2006: Ullrich, Sevilla and Pevenage suspended, The list gets longer, ASO rejects CAS decision,
June 30, 2006: Astana-Würth leaves the Tour
June 30, 2006: More riders named by UCI
June 30, 2006: More riders suspended: Basso and Mancebo out
June 30, 2006: Mancebo ends career
July 1, 2006: Fuentes' code names athlete's dogs
July 2, 2006: 38 pages of circumstantial evidence
July 7, 2006: Saiz questioned
July 9, 2006: Pevenage fired
July 21, 2006: Ullrich, Sevilla fired
July 26, 2006: National federations to receive Operación Puerto dossier
August 13, 2006: Comunidad Valenciana to stop August 20
August 15, 2006: Ullrich gets injunction, Swiss federation has papers
August 17, 2006: Former Liberty five: 2/5 cleared, others still in limbo
August 17, 2006: Swiss Cycling to hold Ullrich proceedings, AIGCP wants Phonak and Astana out now
August 19, 2006: German investigators raid doctor's office and home
August 22, 2006: Extensive doping alleged for Hamilton
August 26, 2006: Cipollini denies link to Fuentes
August 29, 2006: Basso case to be heard
August 30, 2006: Basso hearing adjourned
September 14, 2006: Ullrich's house searched in fraud investigation
September 15, 2006: USA Cycling informed about Hamilton, Austrian federation waiting on Jaksche papers
October 8, 2006: Puerto court orders Spanish federation not to act
October 27, 2006: Basso's Operación Puerto case officially shelved
October 28, 2006: Spanish federation drops Operación Puerto cases
October 29, 2006: UCI disappointed at legal limbo, vow to reopen investigation
November 3, 2006: Spanish anti-doping law passed
November 9, 2006: Discovery formally announces Basso signing
November 13, 2006: Botero cleared by federation
November 24, 2006: Swiss federation opens Ullrich disciplinary hearings
November 25, 2006: EPO found in eight bags of blood, Jaksche cleared to ride
November 26, 2006: EPO blood bags identified?, Manzano accuses Saiz attorney
November 28, 2006: Blood bags seized in Operación Puerto do not add up
November 29, 2006: Zaballa returns with Caisse d'Epargne
November 30, 2006: UCI asks for Spanish help
December 1, 2006: Sevilla and T-mobile agree to part
December 2, 2006: Operación Puerto riders called to testify
December 13, 2006: First witnesses testify in Operación Puerto
December 16, 2006: Saiz out, Unibet in ProTour
December 18, 2006: Allan Davis case closed
December 23, 2006: Polygraph confirms Manzano's claims


January 9, 2007: Spanish paper suggests link between Valverde and Fuentes
January 20, 2007: Davis on his way to ProTour team contract
March 4, 2007: Javier Pascual unemployed in Puerto fallout
March 13, 2007: Operación Puerto dismissed but UCI and riders want resolution
March 15, 2007: Puerto: prosecutors file appeal
March 21, 2007: WADA & UCI: Operación Puerto investigation not complete
April 4, 2007: Puerto blood confirmed to be Ullrich's
April 16, 2007: McQuaid says Fuentes active again
April 24, 2007: Italy collects Basso-related blood bags
April 25, 2007: ASO pushes for Puerto-related suspensions
April 29, 2007: Race orgs exclude Puerto riders, Riders sue Guardia Civil and Spanish federation head
May 1, 2007: New dossier reveals more evidence
May 1, 2007: Basso's request to leave Team Discovery Channel is granted
May 3, 2007: CONI adjourns Basso hearing, McQuaid laments lack of time to resolve Operación Puerto before Grand Tours
May 7, 2007: Basso admits involvement in Operación Puerto
May 7, 2007: No EPO in Basso's blood bags but different for Valverde
May 8, 2007: Basso: "It was only attempted doping"
May 8, 2007: Basso: "I am Birillo"
May 9, 2007: Scarponi: "I am Zapatero"
May 9, 2007: Caisse d'Epargne pulls Zaballa and Plaza from Giro
May 10, 2007: Tinkoff suspends Hamilton and Jaksche
May 15, 2007: WADA granted access to Operación Puerto case
May 15, 2007: CONI asks for Basso and Scarponi suspension
May 15, 2007: Caisse d'Epargne to investigate its Puerto suspects
May 16, 2007: Basso and Scarponi suspended
May 25, 2007: Italian paper reports Bartoli is 'Sansone'
June 16, 2007: Basso receives maximum suspension
June 19, 2007: UCI demands ProTour riders' signatures on anti-doping agreement for Tour participation
July 1, 2007: Jaksche admits taking banned substances & blood doping
July 14, 2007: Scarponi banned for 18 months
August 30, 2007: UCI says no Valverde for Worlds & initiates proceedings
September 14, 2007: Records said to show Ullrich payments to Fuentes
September 19, 2007: Spanish Federation confirms Operación Puerto dossier as unusable
September 20, 2007: Jaksche suspended for one year
December 1, 2007: German court orders Fuentes testimony
December 6, 2007: Fuentes: "I am the famous cycling criminal"


January 10, 2008: CONI to hear Puerto witnesses, Austrian lab investigated
February 15, 2008: Operación Puerto reopened in Spain
April 14, 2008: Germans close Ullrich investigation, Spanish judge refuses to turn over blood to CAS
June 26, 2008: CONI drops interrogation threats for foreign riders allegedly implicated in Puerto
July 11, 2008: Valverde case: CAS suspends procedure
September 27, 2008: Schleck named as Fuentes customer
October 2, 2008: Puerto dropped by Spanish judge, again
October 4, 2008: Puerto dismissal appealed, again
October 17, 2008: Basso ends suspension and is back with Liquigas


January 18, 2009: Operación Puerto opened again
January 23, 2009: Caruso acquitted of Puerto involvement
February 8, 2009: Eight charged in Operación Puerto
February 19, 2009: Valverde under criminal investigation
February 20, 2009: CONI considers Valverde case while UCI awaits verdict
February 24, 2009: Spanish federation seeks access to Puerto blood bags
March 2, 2009: WADA president Fahey asks for Puerto evidence
March 13, 2009: Le Monde newspaper hit with fine over Puerto allegations
April 1, 2009: Valverde: Italy requests two-year suspension
May 1, 2009: International Cycling Union joins in on Valverde's hearing in Italy
May 5, 2009: WADA and Spanish federation join CONI and UCI on Valverde
May 11, 2009: Italian tribunal delivers Valverde two-year suspension
December 11, 2009: Operacion Puerto: case closed


July 8, 2010: Pévenage confesses to Operación Puerto involvement
September 27, 2010: Operacion Puerto court cases facing an end?
December 13, 2010: Fuentes indicted in Spain but out of jail


November 23, 2012: Operación Puerto revived, Fuentes facing jail
November 24, 2012: Saiz reacts to Operación Puerto developments


January 28, 2013: Delays mark start of Operación Puerto hearing
January 29, 2013: Ivan Basso testifies: "I've regained my dignity"
January 29, 2013: Fuentes testifies: we gave transfusions for health reasons
February 2, 2013: Team Blanco suspend Luis Leon Sanchez
February 8, 2013: Cancellara denies Dr. Fuentes links
February 11, 2013: Jaksche provides damning testimony against Fuentes and Saiz
February 12, 2013: Beloki, Etxebarria and Osa deny links with Fuentes
February 12, 2013: Riis stays reticent on Operacion Puerto
February 12, 2013: Report: Basso agreed to pay Fuentes $94,000 for doping
February 13, 2013: Manzano delivers shocking evidence at Puerto trial
February 15, 2013:Transfusions “could have led to deaths” says expert
February 19, 2013: Hamilton outlines doping and blood transfusion program
February 19, 2013: Contador excused from Operacion Puerto testimony
February 20, 2013: Katusha provisionally suspends Vicioso for failure to appear in Operacion Puerto trial
February 20, 2013: 51 Puerto blood bags remain unlocated
March 4, 2013: Fuentes' own witness harms defence
March 12, 2013: Puerto prosecutor insists on two-year sentences for Fuentes and associates
March 15, 2013: Operación Puerto prosecutor dismantles Fuentes defense in final arguments
March 20, 2013: Report: All Operacion Puerto blood bags located
March 21, 2013: Fuentes willing to give up client list
April 30, 2013: Fuentes found guilty in Operacion Puerto trial

For a complete list of links related to the 2013 Operacion Puerto trial, click here.

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