Next step in Schumacher-Holczer court case

An employment-rights court in Germany has ruled this week that it has no jurisdiction in the case between Stefan Schumacher and his former employer Hans-Michael Holczer to the civil court in Stuttgart, Germany. Schumacher is suing the former Team Gerolsteiner manager for wrongful dismissal.

Holczer terminated Schumacher's contract after it was announced that the rider had tested positive for CERA during the Tour de France. Schumacher, who last week was suspended for two years by the French National Anti-Doping Agency, has continued to deny having doped.

The decision of courts was hailed as a victory by Holczer's lawyer. "This proves that Schumacher is not an employee but a free-lancer under contract, as in stated in his contract with Holczer," said attorney Jürgen Schmitt to the dpa press agency. Holczer will now look to recover Schumacher's salary from July 3 to October 15.

Holczer said that he was surprised that no one in Schumacher's entourage "explains the situation to him, the way practically everyone else sees the reality of it." He encouraged the rider to follow the example of his Tour de France roommate Bernhard Kohl and confess to using the drug. (SW)

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