Museeuw denies doping claims
Former king of the Classics Johan Museeuw has denied a report produced by a Belgian court that says
PICTURE BY TIM DE WAELE Former Classics star Johan Museeuw has denied indications from a court in his native Belgium that he used the blood-boosting products EPO and Aranesp in 2003. “I have nothing to hide,” Museeuw said in a statement to the Belgian press. “I have done nothing underhand. I just tried to do my job. There is no doubt that I’m going to be knocked from my pedestal.” Speaking on Saturday before a cycling event to benefit victims of the South-East Asian tsunami, Museeuw said: “I have done nothing bad, I repeat that. I have the impression that they are trying to bring me down. I will not say anything more. It is not normal for an affair like this to appear as easily as it has in the media.” A report produced by the court in Kortrijk that is trying veterinarian Jos Landuyt and soigneur Herman Versele on charges of trafficking in animal hormones and doping products stated: “Taking into account the inquiry conducted into the exchange of faxes and SMS messages, as well as witness interrogations and the confessions made by Landuyt and other persons, it has been established that Johan Museeuw certainly took Aranesp and EPO.” The court’s report was widely published in the Belgian press over the weekend. Museeuw’s lawyer responded to the publication of the report by declaring: “What has happened is really intolerable. There has been some questioning of the presumption of innocence to which everyone is entitled.” Publication of the report first took place in the De Morgen newspaper on Saturday. Several other Belgian papers have reported the author of the De Morgan story, Hans Vandeweghe, as saying the report could affect up to half of the members of the Flemish peloton.