McNamee gives vials, syringes, gauze pads to investigators

Updated: February 7, 2008, 12:14 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

NEW YORK -- Brian McNamee gave federal prosecutors syringes and other physical evidence his lawyers say back the personal trainer's allegations of drug use by Roger Clemens, who returns to Capitol Hill on Thursday in hopes of rebutting the accusations.

Clemens, who gave a deposition Tuesday, is scheduled to hold one-on-one meetings with members of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

A spokeswoman for Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.), a committee member, said a representative for Clemens contacted Cummings' office Wednesday to set up a meeting with the lawmaker.

Cummings spokeswoman Jen Kohl said several other committee members were also asked to meet individually with Clemens. This came on the same day the reports that McNamee had given federal prosecutors physical evidence surfaced.

Cummings is expected to meet with Clemens on Thursday morning. Kohl said Clemens would be asked to appear with Cummings at a press conference after the session, though she said it's doubtful he'd accept the invitation.

A source told The Associated Press that Clemens is also scheduled to meet with Rep. Tom Davis, the committee's ranking Republican. Committee chairman Henry Waxman is not scheduled to meet with Clemens.

On Wednesday evening, a representative of Clemens said that the pitcher was not scheduling additional meetings just to refute McNamee's latest allegations.

"Roger has been interested in sitting down one-on-one with members of the committee for quite awhile," said Lanny Breuer, one of Clemens' lawyers. "We began scheduling these meetings before we heard about Mr. McNamee's latest stunt."

McNamee is due to meet with committee staff Thursday morning to give his own deposition, and his legal team said it will bolster his story with details of the evidence.

His side turned over gauze pads and syringes they said had Clemens' blood to IRS Special Agent Jeff Novitzky in early January, a person familiar with the evidence said, speaking on condition of anonymity because McNamee's lawyers did not want to discuss details publicly. The syringes were used to inject Clemens with steroids and human growth hormone, the person said. A second person, also speaking on condition of anonymity, said the evidence was from 2000 and 2001.

"I think this is a significant point in the case. We believe that this is significant corroboration," said McNamee's lead lawyer, Earl Ward.

Breuer called McNamee's allegations "desperate smears" and said the trainer "apparently has manufactured evidence."

"It is just not credible," Breuer said in a statement. "Who in their right mind does such a thing?"

In December's Mitchell report on doping in baseball, McNamee said he injected Clemens 16 times with performance-enhancing drugs in 1998, 2000 and 2001.

Richard Emery, another of McNamee's lawyers, said the committee will be given a description of the evidence that was turned over to prosecutors.

"It does change the nature of the case from a he-said, she-said to something about physical evidence," Emery said.

Doping expert Don Catlin said steroids could still be detected in a sample that old.

"But if you don't find it, it doesn't mean it wasn't there before," said Catlin, who added there are sure to be chain of custody issues.

He said HGH would be much less stable.

After his five-hour sworn deposition Tuesday, Clemens said that he again denied using performance-enchancing drugs.

By denying under oath that he used performance-enhancing drugs, Clemens put himself at legal risk if prosecutors determine his testimony wasn't truthful.

Keith Ausbrook, the committee's Republican general counsel, told the AP the committee was not aware that such physical evidence existed.

"Unknown and unexpected evidence comes in at all times in any investigation," Ausbrook wrote in an e-mail. "We will still need to examine McNamee's evidence and hear what he has to say."

McNamee, the former personal trainer for Clemens and New York Yankees pitcher Andy Pettitte, also told former Senate majority leader George Mitchell that he injected Pettitte with HGH. Pettitte confirmed in December that he used HGH for two days.

Emery said McNamee's legal team planned to hold a news conference following their client's deposition in Washington on Thursday and will discuss the evidence in greater detail then. Because the items were turned over several years after the events under discussion, Clemens' side could challenge whether they were tampered with.

"Brian McNamee is obviously a troubled man who is obsessed with doing everything possible to destroy Roger Clemens," Breuer said in a statement. "McNamee ... lied to Senator Mitchell, he lied to the federal government and now he apparently has manufactured evidence. He has changed his story repeatedly on this matter. He claims to love Roger Clemens, he says he modeled being a father on Roger Clemens, he said Roger treated him like family -- but he now claims he kept blood, gauze and needles from Roger Clemens for seven years. It defies all sensibility."

Emery said it was unnecessary for McNamee's side to persuade the Justice Department that the evidence was authentic.

"They'll decide themselves what they believe is the case and make their own decisions based on the facts as they have it. All we know is what we believe is the truth," he said.

McNamee's turning over of the syringes first was reported by the New York Daily News on its Web site.

Clemens and McNamee are to testify at a committee hearing next Wednesday along with Pettitte, former Yankees second baseman Chuck Knoblauch and Kirk Radomski, the former New York Mets clubhouse attendant who pleaded guilty in April to felony charges of distributing steroids and laundering money. He is scheduled to be sentenced Friday in federal court in San Francisco.

"Roger is looking forward to testifying before Congress next week to set the record straight," Breuer said. "He will not waiver, nor will he shrink from this because he is telling the truth. We ask all fair-minded people to listen. It is time for Brian McNamee to be subject to the same scrutiny as Roger Clemens."

Information from ESPN.com investigative reporter Mike Fish and The Associated Press was used in this report.