Former Team Festina directeur sportif, Bruno Roussel, and the director if the team's management company Prosport SA, Josep Sanchez I Palou, have been accused of tax evasion by a French court in Lyon on Friday, February 10. The public prosecutor has asked for 18 months imprisonment for both men, as well as a 25.000 Euros fine for Sanchez and a 12.000 Euros fine for Roussel.
The subject of the trial is the registered office of Prosport SA, which was founded in 1994 in Andorra to manage the cycling team sponsored by Spanish watch manufacturers Festina and Lotus. French tax officials allege that the company's commercial activity was really on French territory, as the company owned a warehouse in Meyzieu. Nevertheless, corporation tax and VAT were not paid for the years 1997 and 1998.
The court has announced its decision for March 24. Roussel, who was sacked by the company in July 1998 following the doping revelations at the Tour de France, was already sentenced to one year imprisonment on suspension for infringement of the anti-doping laws in the year 2000.