The Italian Olympic Committee’s anti-doping investigators have formally requested that Lorenzo Bernucci and four members of his family be banned for doping after studying the evidence of a police investigation.
In an official announcement on the Comitato Olimpico Nazionale Italiano (CONI) website, the investigators requested that Bernucci be banned for six years while his wife Valentina Borgioli, brother Alessio Bernucci, mother Antonella Rossi and father-in-law Fabrizio Borgioli each be banned for four years.
Bernucci’s relatives do not compete in any kind of competitive sport but can be banned from entering sports facilities and events under Italian sporting law.
Bernucci was banned in 2007 and fired from the T-Mobile after testing positive for weight loss drug Sibutramine but made a comeback and rode for Lampre-Farnese Vini this year. He won a stage at the 2005 Tour de France while riding for Fassa Bortolo.
His home was searched in April and several drugs were found but Bernucci claimed that they belonged to his wife and brother.
Teammate and close friend Alessandro Petacchi was also involved in the police investigation. He was suspected of using Pfc (Perfluorocarbon) and human serum albumin. Pfc can be used to increase the oxygen carrying capacity of the blood without raising haematocrit levels.
Petacchi was questioned by the CONI investigators a few days after winning the green points jersey at the Tour de France and again in August. He denied any wrong doing and has so far not been deferred for disciplinary action.