Puerto doc Fuentes claims Real Madrid owes him money

Puerto doctor provided testimony in defamation case between soccer club and Le Monde in 2006

MADRID (AFP) — The Spanish doctor at the center of the Operación Puerto blood doping scandal has claimed that football giant Real Madrid owes him money.

Doctor Eufemiano Fuentes is currently on trial in Madrid on charges of endangering public health by performing blood transfusions on a number of high-profile cyclists. However, as the penultimate day of his trial closed, he told awaiting journalists that he was looking for money owed to him by the nine-time European soccer champion.

“I am interested in receiving the debt Real Madrid have with me and is nearly due to be paid,” he told National Spanish Radio.

Fuentes’ lawyer Tomas Valdivielso added that “Real Madrid have a debt with Eufemiano Fuentes from 2007, 2008, or 2009, I don’t remember which.”

However, Valdivielso said the debt had nothing to do with the Operación Puerto investigation into his use of blood transfusions.

Instead, various Spanish media outlets have claimed that Fuentes is claiming money for testimony he gave in a defamation case launched by the club against French newspaper Le Monde in 2006. The newspaper was ordered to pay 300,000 euros in damages for publishing that Madrid and other Spanish clubs had worked with Fuentes.

The court ruled in favor of the club because Fuentes was the source of story and it found him to be of “dubious credibility.”