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BALCO panel to charge track coach

From the Associated Press

Track coach Trevor Graham, who helped launch a three-year federal probe of steroid use by elite athletes, was expected to be charged by a grand jury as soon as today with obstructing the investigation, two Justice Department officials with knowledge of the investigation told the Associated Press.

Speaking on condition of anonymity because the charges had not been made public, the officials said Graham would be charged with making false statements to authorities investigating steroid use in sports.

Graham operates Raleigh, N.C.-based Sprint Capitol USA, a team of about 10 athletes that includes 100-meter co-world record holder Justin Gatlin, who tested positive for testosterone and other steroids in April.

Graham also coached sprinter Marion Jones, who won five medals at the 2000 Sydney Games, and her ex-boyfriend Tim Montgomery, suspended from competition for two years although he never tested positive for a banned substance.

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Several of Graham’s athletes, however, have tested positive for banned substances, and the coach is being investigated by a grand jury for lying to those looking into doping among elite athletes connected to the Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative, the now-defunct Burlingame supplement company that served as a front for a steroids ring.

Graham helped launch the federal investigation three years ago by anonymously mailing a vial containing “the clear,” a previously undetectable steroid to the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency.

Neither Graham nor his attorney returned telephone calls and e-mail inquiries from the Associated Press. Graham steadfastly has denied ever providing banned performance-enhancing drugs to his athletes.


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