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Monday 14, Jul 2014

  Lance Armstrong Grilled Under Oath

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Lance Armstrong was recently forced to provide sworn videotaped testimony about his doping history. The deposition day for the disgraced former cyclist came as part of a fraud case filed against him by SCA Promotions, a sports insurance company in Dallas.

Armstrong made a request to the Texas appeals court and the Texas Supreme Court for stopping the deposition from happening but his request was rejected by both courts. This forced the ex-cyclist to provide answers to questions raised by SCA Promotions attorney Jeffrey Tillotson, who is the sole opposing attorney to interview Lance Armstrong under oath about doping. Tillotson also questioned the cyclist under oath when he denied doping and lied about using banned performance enhancing drugs in 2005-06.

SCA Promotions has filed the lawsuit against Lance Armstrong and is seeking the return of $12 million in costs and bonuses it paid him for winning the Tour de France in 2002-04. This case was thereafter moved to arbitration and a panel is expected to hear the case after some weeks. Lance Armstrong was subpoenaed for the deposition as part of the process for gathering evidence before the hearing.

The cyclist is also facing a separate fraud lawsuit filed by the federal government. In this case, prosecutors are seeking more than $96 million from Lance Armstrong and Armstrong’s former teammate Floyd Landis, who accused Armstrong of doping and encouraging doping within the USPS team, and may get a share any award under the U.S. whistleblower law. The cyclist was expected to testify under oath at a June 23 deposition in Austin but the judge in this whistleblower suit accusing Lance Armstrong put on hold a deposition of the former cyclist. Originally brought by former teammate Floyd Landis in June 2010, this lawsuit was joined in part by the Justice Department in February 2013. Singer Sheryl Crow, the former girlfriend of Armstrong, is listed as a government witness besides Armstrong’s ex-wife, Kristin Armstrong. Cyclists Frankie Andreu, George Hincapie, Tyler Hamilton, and Floyd Landis may be part of a list of potential witnesses against Armstrong. The case is U.S. v. Tailwind Sports Corp., 10-cv-00976, U.S. District Court, District of Columbia (Washington).

The 42-year-old former cyclist, who won a record seven consecutive Tour de France titles, was banned for life and stripped of his Tour de France victories after the United States Anti-Doping Agency found Armstrong guilty of using banned drugs. Armstrong later confessed to doping in January last year during a televised interview with Oprah Winfrey.

Armstrong sued SCA Promotions in 2004 by claiming a breach of contract after the sports insurance company refused to pay his bonus for winning the Tour de France. SCA Promotions withheld the payment and claimed Lance Armstrong cheated to win the race. In a testimony in 2005, the ex-cyclist said he “never” used performance enhancing drugs and race the bike straight up fair and square. With help of the false testimony, Armstrong was able to win a $7.5 million settlement from the company in 2006. Terms of the settlement agreement stipulated that this case could not be reopened.

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Monday 10, Mar 2014

  Armstrong To Face Lawsuit For Lying Under Oath About Doping

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Armstrong To Face Lawsuit For Lying Under Oath About Doping

A Texas appeals court has temporarily blocked an arbitration panel from reviewing bonuses paid to Lance Armstrong. This was after a request by Lance Armstrong to stop an arbitration panel from reviewing $12 million in bonuses he was paid before admitting he used performance enhancing drugs had been initially rejected by a Texas judge.

Judge Tonya Parker declined to stop the panel from evaluating whether bonuses that were awarded to the cyclist for three of his seven Tour de France victories should be repaid to Dallas-based SCA Promotions. An attorney for SCA Promotions, Jeff Tillotson, remarked the panel will be meeting on March 17 for discussing his request that the disgraced cyclist forfeit prize money from those races and is penalized for committing perjury. Tillotson said it is beyond dispute that Armstrong perjured himself in our 2006 proceeding. He added the only thing left to resolve is in what manner should he be punished and he should not be allowed to retain the benefits he got from lying.  Tillotson also said Armstrong used his lies to obtain more than $10 million from us. Tillotson added we had several million dollars in legal fees and suffered an enormous amount of damaging publicity and those are factors we’re going to ask the panel to consider.

The Dallas-based company filed one of many lawsuits against Lance Armstrong after he admitted to doping during an Oprah Winfrey interview in January 2013. The cyclist was stripped of all his seven Tour de France wins by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA), which also banned him for life.

SCA’s attorneys wanted to question Lance Armstrong under oath but attorneys of Armstrong appealed to the Dallas-based Fifth Court of Appeals. Thereafter, Judge Kerry Fitzgerald ordered all proceedings to be stopped pending further review by the court later this month. It is insisted by Armstrong’s attorneys that state law won’t allow SCA to reopen the original settlement that included language that said “no party may challenge, appeal or attempt to set aside” the payment and that it was “fully and forever binding.” Armstrong attorney Tim Herman said we are pleased the court will consider the issue of whether a final settlement, to which all parties agreed would end all disputes, can be reopened when one side has buyer’s remorse.

SCA remarked that the cyclist deceived the arbitration panel by lying under oath that he had never used performance enhancing drugs.  The Dallas-based company is now seeking the return of $12m – Tour de France prize money of $1.5m in 2002, $3m in 2003 and $5m in 2004, plus $2.5m in costs paid in 2004 – plus interest, costs and damages.

The SCA case goes back to 2006. Armstrong’s United States Postal Service team protected itself against that potential financial liability through a policy from SCA Promotions – a company specializing in assuming risks associated with prizes. SCA declined to make payment for bonuses to Lance Armstrong after a French book detailed allegations of doping against Armstrong in 2004. The company however agreed to the policy after an arbitration process, in which Armstrong made a denial of doping under oath.

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