Cycling: Armstrong's aide 'found drugs'

A former personal assistant to Lance Armstrong yesterday filed court papers in the United States alleging that he discovered a banned substance in the six-time Tour de France winner's apartment early last year.

A former personal assistant to Lance Armstrong yesterday filed court papers in the United States alleging that he discovered a banned substance in the six-time Tour de France winner's apartment early last year.

Mike Anderson, who is involved in a legal fight with Armstrong over alleged promises the cyclist made to help Anderson start a bike shop, made the claim in a brief filed in a state district court. The brief does not say whether Anderson saw Armstrong take any banned substances. Armstrong, who has won a record six consecutive Tours, has maintained that he is drug-free. The cancer survivor frequently notes he is one of the most drug-tested athletes in the world. A representative for Armstrong referred all questions to the cyclist's attorney, Timothy Herman, who declined immediate comment because he has not seen the brief. Armstrong is in Europe, where he finished 24th in the Paris-Camembert race on Tuesday.

Anderson, who says he had a key to Armstrong's apartment in Girona, Spain, alleges he was cleaning the bathroom in "early 2004" when he found a white box labelled "like any other prescription drug" but that did not have a doctor's prescription attached. Written on the box was the trademark name "Androstenine, or something very close to this," Anderson said.

"He went to the computer, looked it up on the WADA or USADA websites, and confirmed that what he had found was an androgen, a listed banned substance," Anderson's court brief states, referring to the World Anti-Doping Agency and the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency.

"He was torn about what to do," said Anderson's attorney, Hal Gillespie. "(But) he was sure that if he confronted, he would be fired."

Armstrong has also been questioned by an Italian magistrate over his alleged intimidation of a witness in a trial involving a sports doctor.

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