Valverde: Ban exceeds jurisdiction
MADRID -- Spanish cyclist Alejandro Valverde filed complaints in court against two organizations in connection with his two-year ban from competing in Italy over his alleged involvement in a blood doping ring.
Valverde says the World Anti-Doping Agency and Italy's anti-doping tribunal defied a Spanish judge's order, the cyclist's manager, Antonio Sanchez, said Tuesday. The judge said evidence obtained in Spain cannot be used against Valverde in Italy.
The Italian Olympic Committee's anti-doping tribunal barred Valverde for two years May 11. The committee, known as CONI, had confronted Valverde with DNA evidence and documents that allegedly showed he was involved in blood doping.
More than 50 cyclists were originally implicated in the Operation Puerto investigation, which focused on an alleged blood doping clinic in Madrid.
Before the Italian ruling, Valverde took legal action in Spain against anti-doping prosecutor Ettore Torri and now he has filed separate complaints against seven members of the tribunal and against WADA, Sanchez said. Sanchez contends the two have been sharing information about Valverde.
Valverde's lawyers have said CONI has no jurisdiction and the case should be handled by the Spanish cycling federation.
The Italian committee insists its case against Valverde is based on a DNA match between samples taken during an Italian leg of last year's Tour de France and a blood bag seized in a 2006 raid on the Madrid clinic of a Spanish doctor at the center of the investigation in Spain.
Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press