US Department of Justice Joins Lawsuit Against Lance Armstrong
Lance Armstrong faces a powerful new adversary — the United States government.
The Justice Department notified a federal court Friday that it has joined one of his former racing teammates in suing him for using performance enhancing drugs during the Tour de France.
The government signed on to a lawsuit filed two years ago by Floyd Landis, one of Armstrong’s former Tour de France teammates who has already admitted cheating.
Among its claims: Landis saw Armstrong store and then re-inject his own blood to boost his performance, and Armstrong twice gave Landis banned hormones before races.
After denying for years that he cheated, Armstrong gave a general admission last month in an interview with Oprah Winfrey.
“This issue of performance enhancers, to me, we’re going to pump up our tires, put water in our bottles and, oh yeah, that, too, is going to happen. That was it,” he said.
The government’s legal theory in joining the lawsuit is that when Armstrong agreed to race for the US Postal Service team a decade ago in the Tour de France, he defrauded the government, violating its strict ban on illegal drugs, all the while claiming he did not use them.