Dedecker dismissed from VLD

Belgian Flemish and Liberal Democrats (VLD) Senator Jean-Marie Dedecker, a politican who attempted to make doping a major political issue in the lead-up to Belgium's municipal elections, has been kicked out of the party by chairman Bart Somers for damaging the party's reputation.

Dedecker recently caused a stir in Belgian cycling circles by publicly alleging that he knew of four high profile Belgian cyclists who had used doping this year. He has passed this information onto the Belgian cycling federation and a criminal magistrate for further investigation. In response to the allegations, which did not name any riders, Quick.Step team manager Patrick Lefevere and Tom Boonen announced that they would consider legal action against Dedecker for damaging their reputation.

"At the party meeting on Monday we voted unanimously to stop with internal quarrels," Somers was quoted by the Belgian media as saying. "But to my great regret, I must declare that Jean-Marie Dedecker has been shown to be an incorrigible brawler. His personal attacks against Bart Tommelein, VLD party leader in Oostende, have damaged the VLD. Enough is enough. I do not consider Dedecker a party member any longer."

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