Calculations revealed that the price of an EPO treatment in cycling was around € 50,000 a year per cyclist.
The worldwide turnover of doping in all concerned disciplines would represent around 8 billion euro on an annual basis.
In 2001 the beta blockers appeared on the menu of the golfers, these drugs reduce the effects of adrenaline and slow down the heartbeat.
Belgian physician Georges Mouton (1948-2013), also known as 'Dr Seringue' (Doctor Syringe), was imprisoned in Lantin prison for illegal drug trafficking on September 26, 2001. These included EPO, DHEA, the thyroid hormone Elthyrone and cortisone preparations. Mouton is regarded as the most famous (or the most notorious) Belgian sports physician and was part of the Société du Tour de France for a long time. He held practice in Liège, in Brussels and in Madrid.
In March 2000, Danish ex-pro Brian Dalgaard (1972-) revealed during a TV show that at least thirteen Danish riders were regular customers at Mouton. What was of course denied by those involved.
On page 76 of his book 'Prisonnier du Dopage' (Prisoner of Doping) French ex-cyclist Philippe Gaumont (1973-2013) wrote about Mouton:
"I quickly realized that he was not afraid of anything and I did not doubt for a moment that one day he would have problems ... He sold me a centrifuge, which then costed between three and four thousand Belgian francs ... Many riders visited him, especially Belgians ... Every time I left his office in Liège, I left with a full box of medication, sufficient for a whole month. He supplied everything, including creatine and proteins for regeneration. "
Gaumont did not feel safe to cross the border with all these drugs and realized that he could also get those products without a doctor.
"In order to take some EPO, growth hormones or corticosteroids, you do not need a doctor."
In 1996 and 1998 he tested positive for Nandrolone, in 1999 traces of amphetamine were found in his urine. At the beginning of 2004 he was again discredited, this time he confessed to his EPO use, on which his team fired him and he ended his career.
In his book Gaumont mentioned other Mouton customers. Moroccan athlete Saïd Aouita (1959-) for example, who was the first to go under 7min30 on the 3,000 meters and Moroccan Belgian Mohammed Mourhit (1970-), in 2002 European record holder at 3,000 and 5,000 meters. In May 2013, Gaumont fell into a coma after a heart attack, a few days later he died.
In his 2009 autobiography, French 1500m runner Fouad Chouki (1978-) described how he ended up at Mouton in 2002 and how he got his EPO through him. His trainer Hassan El-Idrissi advised him to visit the Belgian physician. He set up a blood-diagnostic program and afterwards he wrote an extensive amount of dietary supplements and medications. The ultimate goal was to restore the hormonal balance, to harmonize the metabolism and to compensate for deficiencies. Doping was also mentioned during the treatments and especially EPO. Fouad Chouki was persuaded. However, he remained skeptical about the other resources because he was afraid of possible side effects. Slowly but surely, the doctor made it clear to him that his competitors also took doping and that he did not do anything unjust. Mouton never delivered the EPO himself and never injected it himself, he only gave detailed instructions about its application. In 2003 Chouki was caught on EPO, although he claimed he had not received any EPO in the previous ten days. According to Mouton, there would be no danger in view of the short detection timespan.
Darrell Russell (1976-2005) was an offensive lineman with the Oakland Riders and the Washington Redskins in the US National Football League. In 2001 he tested positive for banned products and he had to remain at the side for four games. Shortly thereafter it happened a second time and he was suspended for a year. In 2003, he was suspended for eighteen months and the seventh offense in 2004 gave him a life-long suspension. In 2005 he died near Los Angeles in a car accident.
In November 2001, the Louisiana police arrested Nate Newton (1961), an offensive lineman at the Dallas Cowboys and the Carolina Panthers in the American National Football League, after finding more than a hundred kilos of marijuana in his car. Five weeks later during a check in Texas he carried 175 kilos of the stuff with him. For all this he was sentenced to thirty months in prison.
Latvian bobsleigher Sandis Prusis (1965-) was suspended for a positive test on anabolic steroids. Later he became national coach of his country.
Pavle Jovanovic (1977-), an American bobsleigher of Serbian origin, was caught in December 2001 on the use of norandrostenedione. He was suspended for two years and thereby missed the Salt Lake City Olympics.
After he ended second at the prestigious competition 'Mr. O', American bodybuilder Jay Cutler (1973-) tested positive on diuretics. In his appeal, his suspension was canceled because the proper procedure had not been followed.
English cricket player Duncan Spencer (1972-) was suspended for eighteen months after he was caught using Nandrolone.
The scientific journal Neurology reported that a 26-year-old Spanish rider suffered from severe headaches. It turned out to be a brain thrombosis and the rider admitted that he used EPO in combination with growth hormones and high doses of vitamin A. The doctors published the case and pointed out that the median mix was crucial for the development of thrombosis and demanded further research, in which also dietary supplements had to be included.
After the Italian police found doping products on 3 June in the mobile home of Italian rider Ivan Gotti (1969-), they searched all the hotel rooms of the participating teams at the Giro d'Italia on the night of 6 to 7 June. Banned products were found at seventy people and only two teams had nothing to hide. On this, the Italian team Liquigas-Pata suspended five of its riders. Eventually 51 people were summoned by the Court of Padua and twelve were convicted one year later,.
Two doping traders were arrested in Padua, who supplied large quantities of banned products to amateur cyclists around Lake Garda. Soon Italian professional Antonio Varriale (1974-) appeared on the accusations list and he was also arrested. Another gang member was police officer Armando Marzano (1970-), who confessed delivering doping to Varriale and his team mate Filippo Perfetto (1976).
Dutch sports director Cees Priem (1950-), his fellow countryman and caretaker Jan Moors (1952-) and Russian sports physician Andrei Mikhailov of the TVM team, were indicted by the Court of Reims for breaking the laws on toxic substances. In a 1998 inspection of the TVM car at Courcy's hihgway toll, the French customs had found an ice bucket with more than one hundred EPO ampoules plus a whole bunch of other banned substances. The car was on the way back from the Tour of Murcia. According to Russian team doctor Mikhailov, the EPO was intended for kidney patients at a children's hospital in Moscow. Priem was sentenced to eighteen months in prison and a fine of eighty thousand Swiss Francs (= 50,000 Euro), Moors received six months and 1,400 Euro fine and Mikhailov twelve months and ten thousand Euro. The prison sentences were conditional. In 2000 the Russian doctor went to work for the Belgian team Collstrop, in 2001 he moved to Lotto-Adecco, then to Unibet.com, Katusha and finally to Astana.
As the main supplier of the 'pot Belge' to amateur cyclists, the Court of Poitiers deprived Patrick Charron to three years in prison and a fine of 150,000 French Francs (= 22,500 Euro).
After the World Championship cycling in Portugal, Swede Niklas Axelsson (1972-) delivered a positive EPO pee and he was excluded for two years. In September 2009, he was caught again. The Swedish cycling federation imposed a lifelong suspension on him.
Polish rider Marcin Gebka (1974-) was kicked out of the Peace Race after a too high hematocrit level in a doping test.
Teammate and compatriot Piotr Przydzial (1974-) also appeared to have a too high hematocrit level, for which he was sent home. The following year he tested positive on EPO and got a eight month suspension, but when he was caught again at EPO in 2005, he was suspended for two years.
Czech Ondrej Sosenka (1975-) was the third rider from the Polish CCC Mat team who had to go home because of a too high hematocrit. In 2008 he was caught again, this time on the use of methamphetamine.
German Bjorn Glasner (1973-) also had to leave after the too high hematocrit level in the 2001 Peace Race.
Danish rider Bo Hamburger (1970-) tested positive for EPO, but denied in any way that he was injected that product. In November 2007 he published the book 'Denstste pris - and cykelrytters known' (The highest prize - Confessions of a cyclist), in which he admitted that he used EPO between 1995 and 1997.
"In the mid-nineties doping was part of cycling and the alternative was either stopping cycling or doing the same as the others."
Swiss Roland Meier (1967-) tested positive for EPO after the Walloon Arrow and was suspended for eight months. Three years earlier he had given an interview to the French magazine 'Le Vélo', in which he had stated clearly on the question whether he saw a way out of the 'doping swamp':
"We do not havae to have any illusions, at this high level doping can not be ruled out: Again and again new products appear that can not be detected at that moment ... I have nothing to hide myself, so that's why I have no fear ever to be checked, but I insist on getting an infusion of sugar and vitamins every night, because without it it is impossible to recover from these hardships. "
American cyclist Tammy Thomas (1970-) tested positive for Norbolethone and because it was not her first positive test she was suspended for life.
American cyclist Brooke Blackwelder (1965-) was suspended for eight months after she tested positive on 19-noradrosterone after the Idaho Women's Challenge Race.
A series of doping scandals overshadowed the Giro d'Italia of 2001. After the eighteenth stage, some two hundred police officers searched the hotel rooms of twenty teams in San Remo and confiscated a wide variety of banned substances. The organizers decided to delete the stage from the result.
After his win in Paris-Nice and the Tour of Lombardy, Italian Dario Frigo (1973-) was well on his way to win the 2001 Giro d'Italia. But during the raid Italian carabinieri found a lot of banned products in his room. For this he was kicked out of the Giro, his team fired him out and he got five months suspension. Frigo claimed he did not use the stuff, but only brought it because he felt it was 'exciting'.
"Transporting prohibited items is one of my weaknesses," he said cool.
After his suspension he returned and won the Tour de Romandie again, as the Championship of Zurich, a few stages in the Tour de France and in Paris-Nice, and he also won the Italian championship time trial. His former employer regretted his resignation and took him back into service. After a few new successes, his name reappeared in the doping investigations of the Italian justice system. In 2005 during the Tour de France, EPO was found in the car of Frigo's wife, who was promptly arrested. But Frigo was also put in handcuffs and was forced to leave the Tour.
Pascal Hervé (1964-) was one of the key figures in the Festina affair from 1998, but during the related process in 2000, together with his closest friend Richard Virenque (1969-) he insisted on his innocence, although the rest of the team had confessed. In June 2001, after the sixteenth stage of the Giro d'Italia, he was caught on the use of EPO.
Also Italian Riccardo Forconi (1970-) tested positive for blood doping and EPO and was banned from the race.
In the hotel room of Marco Pantani (1970-2004) an insulin syringe was found and that costed the Italian six months suspension, which was annulled on appeal.
American rider Kirk O'Bee (1977-) got one year of suspension when it was discovered that he had used testosterone. In 2010 he was suspended for life after a second offense.
German cyclist Guido Fulst (1970-), the gold medal in the team pursuit at the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona, got a suspension due to caffeine use and had to pay two thousand Swiss francs.
Austrian rider Jochen Summer (1977-) was suspended for three months after finding Phentermine in his urine.
Two 17-year-old footballers from the Swedish Hudiksvall were caught using Nandrolone, they bought it via the internet.
Portuguese football player Fernando Couto (1969-) tested positive for Nandrolone and was suspended for five months.
After the qualifying match for the World Cup against Cameroon, Zambian footballer Rotson Kilambe (1978-) tested positive for cannabis, which FIFA imposed on him for six months. With that, Kilambe enjoyed the dubious honor that he was the first African player to test positive.
Dutchman Edgar Davids (1973-), midfielder at Juventus, was caught using Nandrolone. The Italian anti-doping committee CONI asked for eight months suspension and a fine of 1.2 million euros and after his suspension Davids would have to undergo randomized tests for six months.
In total, nine players from the Italian highest division were caught.
Another Dutchman who delivered a positive pee on Nandrolone was Lazio Roma player Jaap Stam (1972-), who got a suspension for five months.
Another Dutch sinner was Frank de Boer (1970-) who was active at Barcelona. the Nandrolone delivered him a suspension of six months. As an excuse he said that he had applied ointment to his daughter which supposedly explained his positive pee.
Italian footballers Cristian Bucchi (1977-) and Salvatore Monaco (1972-) were suspended for 16 months by their club A. C. Perugia Calcio after being caught on nandrolone.
Ibrahim Tanko (1977-), a Ghanaian striker who played at Borussia Dortmund in the German league fifteen years and then moved to SC Freiburg, tested positive for tetrahydrocannabinol or cannabis.
Spaniard Josep Guardiola (1971-) of Brescia Calcio tested even twice positive for nandrolone use and was suspended for five months. Later he became the successful coach of FC Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Manchester City.
At the World Championship rhythmic gymnastics, Alina Kabaeva (1983-) captured the gold medals with the ball, the cones and the skipping rope. When it became clear that she had been on Furomeside she had to hand in her medals and she got one year of suspension. In 2004, however, she returned with Olympic gold in Athens.
Suddenly it appeared that she was the girlfriend of Vladimir Putin (1952-) and she was even elected for the Russian parliament. Marriage rumours circulated, but they were quelled by Putin himself.
Irina Tchachina (1982-) also turned out to have taken Furomeside. She also had to hand in her gold medals of the hoop and the all-round number and she too was suspended for one year. But she also came back just like her friend Kabaeva and she picked the silver medal in Athens.
Deniss Cerkovskis (1978-) from Lithuania, participant in the modern pentathlon at the 2000, 2004 and 2008 Olympics, was caught using anabolic steroids.
Paralympica Sara Abbazova (1976-) from Azerbijdjan tested positive for anabolics during the World Championships Power Lifting in Hungary and was excluded for two years. Four years later in Athens it happened again and then she got a life sentence.
Russian Dmitri Vasiljev (1979-) enjoyed the dubious honor of being the first ski jumper to be caught for doping. Furomeside was found in his urine, a diuretic that masks other prohibited substances. The verdict was two years suspension and therefore he missed the Winter Olympics of Salt Lake City.
Norwegian ski jumper Tom Aage Aarnes (1977-) delivered a positive pee on amphetamines in September 2001, for which he received a two-year suspension.
Finnish cross-country skier Harri Tapani Kirvesniemi (1958-) competed for 21 years, won six bronze medals at as many Olympics, but ended on a down note when he was caught doping, together with other Finnish top skiers, during the 2001 World Cup. Normally that would not have come to light if not one of the Finnish team members had forgotten his bag full of syringes and banned products at a gas station near Helsinki airport. Six Finns confessed the use of EPO or of a product to mask the use. The team head and two accompanying doctors were aware of all this and were dismissed.
At that 2001 World Championships in Lahti, Virpi Kuitunen (1976) won both the 5km and the 5km chase. She added a silver medal to this in the 4 x 5km. Afterwards, it turned out that she had used hydroxyethyl starch (HES) for the latter performance, an agent that increases blood plasma and was on the list of prohibited substances. She had to hand in the silver medal, she could keep the two titles because nothing had been discovered after those races.
Four-time world champion Mika Myllyla (1969-2011), in 1998 Olympic gold medallist on the longest distance, caused a national drama when he sent his fans a written confession. The Finnish Association suspended him for two years, but on July 5, 2011, Myllylä was found dead in his house, the police did not give details about the circumstances but ruled out crime.
Janne Immonen (1968-) confessed the intake of HES, a blood plasma expander. Immonen won the 4 x 10 km with the Finnish team, but was disqualified and suspended for two years. During the trial, his former coach Kari-Pekka Kyrö (1963-) stated that Immonen also had used EPO during his career.
Jari Olavi Isometsä (1968-) was caught on HES at the World Cup Nordic Ski. He had to surrender the silver medals he had won on the 10km and 10km chase and was suspended for two years, which ended his skiing career. In 2013 he was send to prison for six months because in 2011 he had denied under oath his doping use from the 1990s.
Milla Saari (1975-) had also used HES, she had to surrender the silver medal of the 4 x 5 km and was also suspended for two years.
"Snow White revealed itself as less than untouched," printed the biggest Finnish newspaper 'Helsingin Sanomat' and the editorial continued: "We were used to laughing at Chinese swimmers and Bulgarian weightlifters, the Finnish skiers are now in that same league."
"Everyone feels betrayed," said Suvi Linden (1962-), the Finnish Minister of Culture and Sport, "everyone who enjoyed the successes of the team is now feeling cheated."
Argentinian tennis player Juan Ignacio Chela (1979-) was suspended for three months due to doping use and was thrown out of the top 500 ranking. He lost all the points won that year, and he had to return the $ 8,550 he had earned the year before at the Tennis Masters Series of Cincinnati, where he tested positive for methyltestosterone.
Argentinian tennis player Guillermo Coria (1982-) had to go to the side for seven months after a positive test for nandrolone.
Nauris Pundors (1983-) from Lithuania was caught using anabolic steroids during the European Championships for juniors and suspended for four years.
The international swimming federation FINA published its list of doping sinners from 2001.
Four years suspension for Chinese swimmer Tang Ninsha for the use of methandienone and for American swimmer Michael F. Picotte (1972-) (photo) for refusing a test.
Eighteen months for Mexican swimmer Juan Jose Veloz (1982-) (photo) and Venezuelan swimmer Miguel Juarez for nadrolone.
A year suspension for Cypriot swimmer Elais Christoforou for ephedrine.
Eight months for Italian swimmer Simon Pietro Di Santos and Croatian water polo player Viseslav Saric (1977-) for cannabis
Six months before French water polo player Sébastien Louveau (1979-) for cannabis, Syrian swimmer Maralla Roudayna for ephedrine and Chinese swimmer Ying Shang (1978-) for clenbuterol.
Four months for Croatian swimmer Boris Loncaric (1989-) for methylhexaneamine.
Three months before Spanish swimmer Ismael Garcia Bravo for ephedrine, for Spanish water polo player Daniel Moro Fernandez (1973-) (photo1) and Belgian water polo player Ben Dietvorst (1983-) (photo2) for cannabis.
Two months for American diver Matt Bricker (1979-) for ephedrine.
In July, Chinese athletes Liqing Song (1980-), Lili Yin (1979-) (photo) and Yunfeng Lui (1979-) were suspended for two years after a positive test for testosterone. The three trained under the wings of the infamous Ma Junren (1944-),
Ludmila Engquist-Leonowa (1964-), a Swedish hurdler of Russian origin, was suspended for four years in 1993. When in 1995 it became known that her former husband and trainer Nikolai Naroschilenko administered her steroids without her knowledge, the sentence was lifted. In 1999 she was operated for breast cancer, after four treatments she stopped her chemotherapy because it could interfere with her athletic career. After three Olympic participations as a hurdler she switched to bobsleigh and she prepared for the 2002 Winter Games in Salt Lake City, where she was the first woman to win gold at both winter and summer games. In 2001, however, she was caught using banned drugs and got a two-year suspension. She stopped her sports career and settled with her Swedish husband Johan Engquist in Spain.
At the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles, Raymond Stewart (1965) won the silver medal with the Jamaican relay team 4 x 100m. At the WC of 1987 in Rome he finished second in the 100m and third with the relay team 4 x 100m. After his sporting career, he tried his luck as a coach, but in 2001 he was suspended for life because he provided his athletes with doping.
South African shot putter Burger Lambrechts (1973-) had to watch from the sidelines from 2001 to 2003 when stanozolol was found in his urine after establishing a new national record.
Chinese weight lifters Yang Xuewei and Qiu Xiexion were suspended for two years after a positive doping test.
Latvian weightlifter Viktors Šcerbatihs (1974-) ventured to the anabolic steroids and was put on non-active by his own federation for two years. Afterwards he became a member of parliament in his own country.
Armenian weightlifter Sergo Chakhoyan (1969-), who represented Australia at the Goodwill Games in Brisbane, tested positive for anabolics and was suspended for two years. In 2007 he was caught again and he was suspended for life.