The Swiss cycling federation is still waiting for the papers in the Jan Ullrich case, but director Roland Schläfli is optimistic that things will go quickly once they arrive. Once the documents about Ullrich's involvement in Operacion Puerto arrive, "we will need about a week to determine whether we will present the case to our disciplinary committee, which would then open proceedings. If that happens, then a final decision could be reached with another week," he told German press agency dpa. "As far as I know, that would be the first case in which we opened proceedings where there was no positive doping test."
UCI spokesman Enrico Carpani said that the papers are underway. "It can only be a matter of days until the Swiss federation receives the documents. The Italians have already received them." He noted that the national federation has one month to open proceedings after receiving the paperwork. "Then the UCI would be on. If we are not satisfied with the decision of the national federation, we can go to the international sports court."
Meanwhile, the Italian cycling federation has announced that Ivan Basso will be heard in front of its disciplinary commission on August 29.
German attorney Michael Lehner, who is defending Danilo Hondo in his drawn-out doping proceedings, thinks that Ullrich has good chances to come out of the affair unscathed. "A charge wouldn't be easy, since there is neither a positive A or B sample. There is only circumstantial evidence," he said.
On the other hand, Dr. Werner Franke, German anti-doping crusader, assumed that Ullrich is guilty, and more importantly said that he was risking his life. After looking at the list of products which the German rider was alleged to have used during the 2005 Tour de France, Franke told Bild newspaper, "The substances in the medications are extremely dangerous. In the past it has been shown that these things can cause death or lead to serious health problems."
And Franke wants actions to follow his words. "I am considering filing charges of serious bodily injury; not against Ullrich, because I don't believe that he had any idea how dangerous all of that was," he affirmed. "I'm concerned with those behind the scenes, the real criminals. I am so far the only one in Germany who has gone to court to fight against doping; the other people like Mr. Scharping [Rudolf Scharping, head of the national federation - ed.] are just talking about it," he concluded.
Cyclingnews' recent coverage of 'Operation 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