Expatica news

Ex-national cycling coach acquitted of doping

25 October 2005

BRUSSELS — Antwerp Court acquitted on Tuesday former national cycling coach José De Cauwer of trading and possession of amphetamines.

The court ruled that the allegations lodged against the 46-year-old had exceeded the statute of limitations and were otherwise unproven.

The public prosecutor had demanded De Cauwer be sentenced to a suspended three-month jail term and a fine of EUR 5,000, newspaper ‘Het Laatste Nieuws’ reported.

Chief suspect Marc C. was sentenced to a suspended eight-month jail term, after he was found guilty of supplying 236 jars of doping products.

The court said he had developed large trade in amphetamines and was highly critical of the fact he was still a coach of a junior team.

His wife, Maggie P., received a stay of sentence, while five other suspects from the cycling world were sentenced to community work orders of 60 hours.

All suspects were accused of supplying drugs to the addicted former amateur cyclist Ronny Vansweevelt between 1995 and 2000. They did so primarily to maintain their own drug use.

Vansweevelt was arrested on 31 October 2000 as he tried to escape the scene of a traffic accident. Police arrested him after a high-speed car chase.

The cyclist was found in possession of amphetamines and admitted that he had been using drugs since 1995. He supplied the names of his suppliers, naming also De Cauwer.

De Cauwer later admitted passing a contact number on to Vansweevelt. That person was responsible for supplying Vansweevelt with the drugs.

He also admitted that his letterbox was used to receive and collect amphetamines on at least one occasion.

Detectives found a used needle and syringe in De Cauwer’s garden shed, but it could not be proven to have contained a doping product, broadcaster VRT reported.

[Copyright Expatica News 2005]

Subject: Belgian news