November 15, 2006
L'Equipe says Landis implicated in lab hack
Sunday, Floyd Landis did his first interview since the Tour with French media, appearing on the weekly sports program Stade 2. No real news there — he made the case he's been making in the U.S., but to the French people, and indirectly to the ASO, which will decide whether to strip his 2006 Tour title.
Then, less than 48 hours later, a story appears in L'Equipe (in French) (English story linked above) claiming computer systems at the Chatenay-Malabry lab that tested Tour de France samples this year have been hacked. On top of that, L'Equipe claims investigators are focusing on “an associate” of Landis in the investigation.
The incursion apparently occurred back in September, with e-mails "in poor French" being sent alongside lab documents chosen to make the facility look bad. Lab officials say the documents “were taken out of context,” which means they're not actually false. The head of the French anti-doping agency took the opportunity to lobby for more tax dollars to better hack-proof the lab's computers.
I suspect there's less story here than initially reported. I can't believe that anyone actually involved in the case would first hack into the system, then send badly forged e-mails that included files garnered by the hacking.
TBV offers as much detail as anyone could want on the continuing Floyd farce.
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