Former Pro Cyclist Roberto Heras to receive $800,000 in damages
Spain’s Supreme Court rejects an appeal after his former win at the 2005 Vuelta Espana title was reinstated
Spanish authorities have been ordered to pay 725,000 euros ($800,000 dollars) in damages, after a positive doping test was overturned. Spain’s Supreme Court rejected their appeal.
Heras tested positive for the banned substance EPO at the 2005 Vuelta a Espana (Tour of Spain) and was banned for two years by Spain’s Cycling Federation. He was also stripped of the title, which would have been a record-breaking fourth Tour of Spain for the cyclist.
The positive test was overturned in 2011 by a civil court, which ruled that irregularities had taken place in the analysis of blood samples during the investigation. The Supreme Court upheld that decision in 2012 and ordered Heras be reinstated as the 2005 Tour of Spain winner.
Heras, a former teammate of Lance Armstrong and member of the US Postal Service cycling team between 2001 and 2003 was Tour of Spain champion in 2000, 2003, 2004 and reinstated 2005. He sucessfully sued the Spanish state for over 1 million euros in damages.
Spain’s National Court ruled in his favour but reduced the compensation to 725,000 euros, which was half the salary he received in his last year as a professional.
The Supreme Court said in a statement it rejected the Spanish state’s appeal because the doping ban caused Heras to lose commercial and professional contracts.