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Kevin de Weert says he’s not under investigation in ozone doping case

Kevin de Weert is not under investigation in relation to the Dr. Chris Mertens, his team announced Tuesday

Kevin de Weert is not under investigation in relation to Dr. Chris Mertens, who faces trial for allegedly providing banned ozone treatment to athletes. De Weert’s team, LottoNL-Jumbo, made this announcement hours after Belgian daily Het Laaste Nieuws connected him to the inquiry on Tuesday.

“I was a patient at doctor Mertens’ practice for a short period of time in 2012, which is close to my home. At the moment I received notice of the investigation, I immediately looked for a different physician,”said de Weert in a statement. “At the end of 2013, I received a court letter with the request to voluntarily provide them with DNA material because they wanted to close the case. In the beginning of 2014, I voluntarily gave them samples of my DNA, and I do not have to justify myself at the court or my sports federation, because I never received any summons for hearing.”

De Weert, a Belgian climber who was riding for Omega Pharma-Quick Step in 2012, is free to race and will start Tirreno-Adriatico next week, according to his team.

Mertens is being investigated for providing ozone therapy to top athletes in cycling and other sports, a procedure wherein blood is removed, infused with ozone, and then re-injected. He is also accused of prescribing the injection of Vaminolact, an infant medication. Vaminolact is not illegal itself, but administering it with an infusion breaks the UCI’s no-needle policy.

A number of cyclists have been connected to the doctor, including cyclocross star Tom Meeusen and BMC’s Greg Van Avermaet. The latter has been named as a client of Mertens but is not under investigation in the ozone case.