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Grand jury subpoena issued to triple Tour winner
Greg LeMond has been served with a grand jury subpoena as part of the US Federal Food and Drug Administration probe into the alleged doping practices of the US Postal Cycling Team, according to The NY Daily News.
The investigation centres around the revelations of Floyd Landis in recent months, which include allegations that Lance Armstrong and other members of the team doped whilst on the US Postal squad, all of which have been denied by the seven-time Tour de France champion thus far.
The subpoena, which was issued by a grand jury in the US District Court of the Central District of California, demands documents and testimony from LeMond concerning his knowledge of the alleged practices of the four teams for which Armstrong has ridden since his return from cancer in 1998: US Postal Service, Discovery Channel, Astana, and Radio Shack.
Food and Drug Administration criminal investigator Jeff Novitzky, who uncovered the BALCO doping ring in 2003, has already enjoyed the co-operation of several riders who agreed to speak with investigators as the probe gathers momentum, the aim of which is to discover whether Armstrong and members of his teams committed sporting fraud by allegedly using money from sponsors to undertake an elaborate doping program that may have helped the American win seven Tour de France titles.
Armstrong recently commented on the situation from France, where he is currently riding the Tour de France for Team RadioShack under the directorship of Johan Bruyneel, who, according to Landis' statements, was also involved in suspect practices. Both men vehemently deny the allegations and have moved to discredit Landis.
The NY Daily News reports that the subpoena "orders LeMond to appear at a federal courthouse in Los Angeles on July 30 to answer questions from the grand jury, which meets in strict secrecy. Witnesses testify under oath and may not be accompanied inside the room by an attorney".
LeMond's wife, Kathy, told the publication: "We are overjoyed. I hope the truth will come out."
It comes after years of bitter dispute between the first American winner of the Tour de France, LeMond, and arguably the best-known, Armstrong, which started in 2001 when LeMond spoke with British journalist and LA Confidentiel co-author David Walsh about Armstrong's relationship with disgraced Italian doctor Michele Ferrari. The feud eventually spilled over into the commercial sphere, with Trek Bicycle Corporation dropping the LeMond brand of bicycles which it had hitherto distributed.
The NY Daily News reported last week that the Trek Bicycle Corporation was also subpoenaed for documents as part of the investigation after Landis' allegations that its bicycles were sold during his tenure with US Postal when it sponsored the squad. And while Armstrong has denied those claims, LeMond has still been ordered to produce documentation relating to his dealing with Trek.