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Sunday Times sues Lance Armstrong for €1.2m over libel payment

The British newspaper settled a case taken against them by the cyclist’s lawyers in 2006.

Lance Armstrong was stripped of his Le Tour titles in October.
Lance Armstrong was stripped of his Le Tour titles in October.
Image: AP Photo,Graham Hughes

THE SUNDAY TIMES is suing Lance Armstrong for over €1.2 million over a libel payment made to the disgraced cyclist in 2006.

The newspaper paid Armstrong €400,000 to settle a libel case after previously suggesting that he may have cheated.

But the United States Anti-Doping Agency subsequently found that he had led the ‘most sophisticated, professionalised and successful doping programme that sport has ever seen’.

USADA’s findings lead to a life ban for the Texan, who was also stripped of his seven Tour de France wins.

The newspaper is reportedly demanding the return of the original settlement payment, along with interest and legal costs.

In a letter to Armstrong’s lawyers, the paper said: “It is clear that the proceedings were baseless and fraudulent.

Your representations that you had never taken performance-enhancing drugs were deliberately false.”

The newspaper had long questioned Armstrong’s achievements and in 2004 it published an article stating that it was appropriate for questions about his success to be “posed and answered”.

After Armstrong’s lawyers issued a writ, the newspaper settled with him in June 2006.

- © AFP, 2012

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