Lance Armstrong declines under-oath interview to US Anti-Doping Agency
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Lance Armstrong declines under-oath interview to US Anti-Doping Agency

Houston : TX : USA | Feb 20, 2013 at 1:15 PM PST
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Lance Armstrong

After admitting to doping while competing in the Tour de France, former champion cyclist Lance Armstrong has declined an under-oath interview to the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA).

Following a torrid year that saw numerous accusations of doping surfacing against the seven-time Tour de France winner, Armstrong was accused by USADA in June of last year of being at the center of one of the most “sophisticated, professionalized and successful doping program that sport has ever seen” and was stripped of his seven Tour de France titles in addition to being banned from the sport for life. Of course, right until the very end, Armstrong maintained his innocence, saying that the charges against him were baseless, but in August, he said that he no longer wished to fight the accusations against him - which many saw to be an admission of guilt. This all culminated later in an interview that the defamed cyclist gave to chat show host Oprah Winfrey and admitted to taking performance-enhancing drugs during all his seven Tour de France wins.

With this admission, it would seem natural that Armstrong would interview with USADA, which in turn could overturn the lifetime ban on him, but in a statement released by the cyclist’s attorney, Armstrong said that he "will not participate in prosecutions... that only demonize selected individuals."

The statement released today said that Armstrong would be willing to help the Anti-Doping Agency with its investigation, but that he is not agreed to be interviewed by them, adding, "Lance is willing to cooperate fully and has been very clear: He will be the first man through the door, and once inside will answer every question, at an international tribunal formed to comprehensively address pro cycling, an almost exclusively European sport. We remain hopeful that an international effort will be mounted, and we will do everything we can to facilitate that result. In the meantime, for several reasons, Lance will not participate in USADA's efforts to selectively conduct American prosecutions that only demonize selected individuals while failing to address the 95 per cent of the sport over which USADA has no jurisdiction."

Of course, refusing to be interviewed by USADA means that Armstrong has little to no chance of ever returning to cycling, something which he has done in the past. After retiring in 2005, the cyclist returned to the sport in 2008, only to retire again in 2011.

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arkar is based in Seattle, Washington, United States of America, and is an Anchor for Allvoices.
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