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Edita Rumsas charged with doping violations

The wife of Lithuanian cyclist Raimondas Rumsas, who was third in this year's Tour de France, has been charged with doping offences after she was caught in possession of performance-enhancing drugs, prosecutors said Tuesday. Edita Rumsas was arrested on Sunday after French customs officials found a number of doping products including corticoids, testosterone and EPO in her car. She is now being held at the women's prison at Bonneville in the French Alps. "We discovered a large amount of medical products of which some could be classed as doping - corticoids, testosterone, EPO,

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By VeloNews Interactive wire services, Copyright AFP2002

The wife of Lithuanian cyclist Raimondas Rumsas, who was third in this year’s Tour de France, has been charged with doping offences after she was caught in possession of performance-enhancing drugs, prosecutors said Tuesday.

Edita Rumsas was arrested on Sunday after French customs officials found a number of doping products including corticoids, testosterone and EPO in her car.

She is now being held at the women’s prison at Bonneville in the French Alps.

“We discovered a large amount of medical products of which some could be classed as doping – corticoids, testosterone, EPO, growth hormones and anabolic steroids,” said prosecutor Vincent Le Pannerer. Her lawyer Veronique Coudray said that her client “explained that she was transporting the medicines for her family.”

Rumsas, whose podium finish in the Tour has come under suspicion as a result of the findings, was suspended on Monday by his Lampre team pending an investigation.

But the cyclist has denied any involvement in doping – and insists the drugs his wife Edita was found with were meant for his mother-in-law.

“I’ve never taken anything,” Rumsas said. “My performance in the Tourde France was clean. I don’t know anything” he told the Gazzetta dello Sport.

Asked about the drugs, Rumsas told the paper: “My wife was taking them to Lithuania for my mother-in-law.”

The Gazzetta commented in an editorial that Rumsas had a defense against doping allegations and had given “an original explanation.”

Rumsas wife was held by customs officers in Chamonix before being quizzed by police in Lyon. Officials discovered pharmaceutical products and two prescriptions issued in Poland.

“We discovered a large amount of products – corticoids, testosterone and EPO,” said Lyon police chief Christian Lothion.

Race director Jean-Marie Leblanc admitted on Monday he was ‘a bit astonished’ by the Lithuanian’s progress as a major Tour contender, but declined further comment pending the outcome of current investigations.
Copyright AFP2002


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