USADA file formal charges against Lance Armstrong
The US Anti-Doping Agency have attempted to steal the spotlight from the start of the 2012 Tour de France by confirming they are to file formal doping charges against seven-time champion Lance Armstrong.
In a predictable piece of timing to ensure more coverage of their ongoing case, the organisation issued a statement which revealed an independent three-person Anti-Doping Review Board had unanimously recommended going ahead with legal proceedings. An arbitration panel will now rule on the case.
A statement from USADA CEO Travis T Tygart said: "USADA can confirm that the independent three-person Anti-Doping Review Board (ADRB) has conducted a full evaluation and has made a unanimous recommendation to move forward with the adjudication process in accordance with the rules.
"All respondents will have the opportunity to exercise their right to a full public arbitration hearing, should they so choose, where all evidence would be presented, witness testimony would be given under oath, and an independent group of arbitrators would ultimately decide the outcome of the case.
"USADA will continue to follow the established procedures that are compliant with federal law and were approved by athletes, the US Olympic Committee, and all Olympic sports organisations."
The 40-year-old American, who survived testicular cancer, has always strenuously denied all doping allegations during his career that saw him win Le Tour from 1999 to 2005.
He retired after the 2005 edition, however returned in 2009 for Astana Cycling and RadioShack before retiring for a second time in February 2011. He took up triathlon earlier this year.
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