"I don't know [Ivan] Basso but I know [Michele] Scarponi," said Alessandro Kalc yesterday, after exiting his hearing with Italian Olympic Committee (CONI) anti-doping prosecutors. The ex-mountain biker was allegedly a courier of blood bags for Eufemiano Fuentes in Italy.
According to La Gazzetta dello Sport, the man from Trieste originally tried to negate every charge from CONI's Ettore Torri. Kalc was allowed to carry on for some time - the hearing lasted two hours - but then Torri showed the proof; a fax from Fuentes prescribed 'therapy,' a table of telephone calls and SMSs.
After the evidence was shown Kalc and his lawyer, Guido Fabbretti, asked for a five minute recess and then returned to say "maybe it is better we adjourn."
Kalc will return to CONI on Wednesday, May 16, at 12.30.
"There are many controversies but it does not seem right to talk in this moment, even if the proceedings are not secret," said Fabbretti. "If Kalc knew Fuentes on a personal level is yet to be known. A fact is that there were documents traded between the two and there will be an explanation for this."
After Torri has heard both Basso and Scarponi it is likely that he has enough proof to demonstrate Kalc's relationship and responsibilities to Fuentes, the doctor at the centre of the Operación Puerto investigation.
However, Basso refuted any relationship with Kalc. "The famous [Alessandro] Kalc, the presumed carrier of blood bags, I know nothing of him. I said what I know to the prosecutor but certain names I have never heard mentioned," noted Basso in Thursday's La Gazzetta dello Sport.
Cyclingnews' recent coverage of 'Operación Puerto'
April 2, 2009 - Valverde indignant over possible suspension
April 1, 2009 - Valverde: Italy requests two-year suspension
March 13, 2009 - Le Monde newspaper hit with fine over Puerto allegations
March 2, 2009 - WADA president Fahey asks for Puerto evidence
February 24, 2009 - Spanish federation seeks access to Puerto blood bags
February 20, 2009 - CONI considers Valverde case while UCI awaits verdict
February 19, 2009 - Valverde under criminal investigation
February 11, 2009 - Valverde summonsed for Operación Puerto in Italy
February 8, 2009 - Eight charged in Operación Puerto