Cyclist to seek dismissal of lying charge
in Balco case
By Julia Cheever
September 14, 2007
A lawyer for a former championship cyclist accused of lying
in a sports steroid probe told a federal judge in San Francisco
today he will seek dismissal of the charges in the case.
U.S. District Judge Susan Illston will hear the request for dismissal
of the charges against Tammy Thomas, 37, at a court session Nov.
Thomas is accused of three counts of lying to a federal grand
jury in San Francisco on Oct. 30, 2003, and one count of obstructing
justice by giving false statements to the grand jury.
The panel was investigating a sports steroids scheme centered
on the Burlingame-based Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative, or BALCO.
Thomas was not present in court today but will appear at the
Nov. 9 hearing, said her attorney, Ethan Balogh.
Thomas, now a student in Oklahoma, won a silver medal in the
World Track Cycling Championship in Belgium in 2001. She was banned
from competition for life in 2002 by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency
after she tested positive for an anabolic steroid called norbolethone.
Balogh outside of court declined to comment on the basis for
seeking dismissal of the charges.
He told Illston he will also file a motion for suppression of
Illston set Oct. 12 as the deadline for filing the motions.
The three false statements Thomas is accused of making were that
she had never received performance-enhancing drugs from chemist
Patrick Arnold; that she did not take anything that Arnold gave
her; and that she never took anabolic steroids.
Thomas was recently in law school in Michigan but according to
a document filed by Balogh transferred in August to a different
school in Norman, Okla., which is the location of the University
Thomas and Arnold are among eight people indicted in connection
with the BALCO probe. Six, including Arnold and two BALCO executives,
pleaded guilty to various charges.
Arnold admitted last year to one count of conspiring to distribute
norbolethone and during the plea also acknowledged making a once-undetectable
steroid-like drug known as THG or "The Clear."
In addition to Thomas, Olympic track coach Trevor Graham is awaiting
trial. He is accused of three counts of lying to investigators
during an interview in 2004 and is scheduled to go on trial in
Illston's court Nov. 26.
Another grand jury is investigating whether San Francisco Giants
star Barry Bonds may have lied to the 2003 grand jury. Bonds's
personal trainer, Greg Anderson, is in prison for contempt of
court for refusing to testify before the new panel.
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