Lance Armstrong won’t cooperate with USADA probe
(CNN) — Cyclist Lance Armstrong will not cooperate with the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency’s investigation of performance-enhancing drug use in the sport, an Armstrong attorney said Wednesday.
USADA had given Armstrong — who publicly admitted such drug use last month — until Wednesday to decide whether he would cooperate under oath with investigators as part of a possible path to altering his USADA-imposed lifetime competition ban.
“Lance will not participate in USADA’s efforts to selectively conduct American prosecutions that only demonize selected individuals while failing to address the 95% of the sport over which USADA has no jurisdiction,” Armstrong attorney Tim Herman said in a written statement Wednesday.
USADA CEO Travis Tygart issued a statement Wednesday saying that “over the last few weeks (Armstrong) has led us to believe that he wanted to come in and assist USADA, but was worried of potential criminal and civil liability if he did so.”
“Today we learned from the media that Mr. Armstrong is choosing not to come in and be truthful and that he will not take the opportunity to work toward righting his wrongs in sport,” Tygart said. “At this time we are moving forward with our investigation without him and we will continue to work closely with (the World Anti-Doping Agency) and other appropriate and responsible international authorities to fulfill our promise to clean athletes to protect their right to compete on a drug-free playing field.”
Armstrong was stripped of his seven Tour de France titles by international cycling’s governing body in October after a damning report by USADA accused him and his team of the “most sophisticated, professionalized and successful doping program” in cycling history.
He first admitted using performance-enhancing drugs and blood doping during a January television interview with Oprah Winfrey.
The USADA banned Armstrong, 41, for life but said the ban could be reduced to eight years if he cooperated under oath with investigators. Armstrong’s competitive cycling career is long over, but he moved on to triathlons and won several of them in 2012.
The agency initially gave Armstrong a February 6 deadline before extending it by two weeks.
CNN’s Jason Morris, Wayne Sterling and Steve Almasy contributed to this report.