Sampanis testifies on doping

Weightlifter Leonidas Sampanis, who was stripped of an Olympic bronze medal after testing positive for high levels of testosterone, yesterday testified before prosecutors, who also sent a report about a sports club owned by sprinting coach Christos Tzekos to Parliament. Sampanis spent almost two hours defending himself before prosecutors Athina Theodoropoulou and Spyros Mouzakitis, who also investigated why sprinters Costas Kenteris and Katerina Thanou missed a drugs test on the eve of the Games. he has denied taking drugs. Yesterday, Sampanis submitted a written statement to the prosecutors, which said: «An athlete with my experience knows that hormones are the most easily detectable substance… I would be mad or suicidal to knowingly take such a substance while furiously competing to win a medal.» The same prosecutors also sent a report to Parliament yesterday concerning 1.5 million euros’ worth of state funding for a sports club owned by Tzekos, coach of Kenteris and Thanou. A parliamentary investigation into the case could now follow.