Washington - A US insurance firm on Thursday
filed a lawsuit against disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong seeking
restitution of $12 million in bonus money paid to the American for his
Tour de France triumphs.
The Texas-based company, SCA Promotions,
wants confessed dope cheat Armstrong to repay money the firm insured
from his Tour victories in 2002, 2003 and 2004, after he was stripped of
his record seven Tour titles last year.
"It is time now for Mr
Armstrong to face the consequences of his actions," the complaint said.
"This includes returning all of the funds paid to him by SCA, which
totals more than $12 million."
"Mr. Armstrong has no legal right
to retain any prize money paid to him by SCA because he is not the
official winner of any Tour de France titles," it said.
in a Texas state court not only could cost Armstrong financially but
could force him to testify under oath about the doping scandal that
ruined his cancer-comeback story and tainted his Livestrong Foundation
Armstrong was also banned for life when the US
Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) found overwhelming evidence that he was at
the heart of a sophisticated doping scheme when his US Postal Service
team dominated the Tour de France.
"Lance Armstrong perpetuated
what may well be the most outrageous, cold-hearted and elaborate lie in
the history of sports," the lawsuit said.
After years of denials,
Armstrong confessed last month that he had taken performance-enhancing
drugs in sweeping Tour titles from 1999-2005.
Armstrong sued SCA
and won after the company delayed his 2005 bonus payment because of
reports in Europe that the American had used performance-enhancing
"We think there are several avenues for us to seek recovery on this," SCA attorney Jeff Dorough said.
and his lawyers said flat-out at that time that if he was ever stripped
of the titles, they would pay the money back," Dorough said. "We're
just seeking to hold them to their promises."
Mark Fabiani cited details of a 2006 settlement agreement between SCA
and Armstrong in saying that the firm had no recourse to reclaim the
"We are going to let the settlement agreement speak
for itself. It is very clear on this point," Fabiani said. "The language
of the agreement clearly bars SCA from wriggling out of the agreement."
settlement, in which SCA agrees to pay Armstrong $7.5 million, says in
part that "no party may challenge, appeal or attempt to set aside the
Armstrong also faces a lawsuit from former US
Postal team-mate Floyd Landis, who was stripped of the 2006 Tour de
France title for doping but says Armstrong violated terms of a
sponsorship deal with US Postal by using banned drugs.
has reported that federal agents are investigating Armstrong for crimes
including obstruction of justice, as well as witness tampering and
Asked if the US Postal Service was looking into Armstrong, USPS spokesperson Patricia Licata had no comment.
Wednesday, USADA chief Travis Tygart extended a deadline that gives
Armstrong until February 20 to cooperate with anti-doping authorities by
testifying under oath about his activities to have any hope of seeing
his ban reduced so he could compete in sanctioned cycling and triathlon
"We have been in communication with Armstrong and his
representatives and we understand that he does want to be part of the
solution and assist in the effort to clean up the sport of cycling,"
Tygart said in a statement.
"We have agreed to his request for an additional two weeks to work on details to hopefully allow for this to happen."