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Timeline of Operación Puerto

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One of the blood bags from Fuentes' clinic

One of the blood bags from Fuentes' clinic (Image credit: AFP)
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Eufemiano Fuentes arrives to a mob of press at the Madrid court

Eufemiano Fuentes arrives to a mob of press at the Madrid court (Image credit: AFP Photo)

Lessons learned from a decade of Operación Puerto

The Operación Puerto case broke in the month leading up to the 2006 Tour de France with Liberty Seguros manager Manolo Saiz the first name to hit the headlines when he was arrested outside a Madrid clinic while carrying large sums of cash. A new name suddenly arose from the chatter, that of Eufemiano Fuentes. The Spaniard would eventually be outed as a major player in helping cyclists to blood dope, and was convicted on charges of crimes against public health seven years later.

Operación Puerto was as significant, if not more so, than the 1998 Festina Affair, in that it uncovered a pervasive culture of sophisticated doping going on in professional cycling, one that would only be fully revealed when the US Anti-Doping Agency looked into Lance Armstrong and the US Postal Service team.Only a few athletes have been punished in the Puerto case, even though Fuentes had dozens of clients.

June 14, 2016 marked an important date in the course of the whole affair as a judge in Spain ruled that the 211 blood bags relating to the scandal would not, as had previously been ruled, be destroyed. They are to be handed over to the authorities, including the UCI and WADA, to be analysed with the possible identification of who they belonged to, though sanctions are highly unlikely given the ten-year statute of limitations in the WADA code.










For a complete list of links related to the 2013 Operación Puerto trial, click here.