German media published stories on Friday that Andreas Klöden and Matthias Kessler
were among the T-Mobile riders that received blood transfusions at the University of Freiburg after the prologue of the 2006
Tour de France. This was just days after Jan Ullrich was sent home from the Tour by the T - Mobile team, for his alleged involvement
in the Puerto scandal. According to these media former teammate Patrick Sinkewitz accused the riders during an interrogation
at the office of the state prosecution of Freiburg, Germany. The state prosecuter himself, Wolfgang Maier did not want to
comment on the media reports.
Astana's Andreas Klöden reacted in a press release yesterday. Klöden said: "With
incomprehension I took notice of the reports about the accusations that Patrick Sinkewitz allegedly made against me."
In the past Klöden often said he didn't take performance enhancing drugs and the
German rider was referring to that in his press release saying that he commented the subject which was discussed in the media
at several occasions and that he couldn't add anything new to it. But it seems that Klöden is prepared to defend
himself for a possible witch-hunt by German media. Parts of the German media started an unprecedented witch-hunt against Klöden's
former teammate Jan Ullrich after 'Operacion Puerto' broke out. His former teammate was Klöden said: "I asked my attorney's
to clear up the facts and to take the necessary steps to protect my personal rights."
Klöden said he already
offered his cooperation to the investigating state prosecution before the current media reports. Klöden says his attorney
was not granted access to the records yet so he doesn't know yet "what I am accused of, and if and to what extend Patrick
Sinkewitz or others are really accusing me."
Klöden doesn't like the
fact that German media possibly received detailed information about the case. Klöden said: "To be honest, I am astonished
that alleged details of information of preliminary proceedings (allegedly media representatives have 'assured information'
in which Patrick Sinkewitz was 'threatened' during his interrogation, so he would 'parry' and would charge others!) of which
not even the people involved have been informed, seemed to be given systematically to the press."
Klöden added: "Because
until now the state prosecution behaves correctly and does not confirm the information of the media reports, I suspect that
allegedly informed third persons are providing the press for obvious reasons with these real or invented stories
about the interrogation of Patrick Sinkewitz.
Klöden's attorney's asked
him not to comment about the records of the case, which he and his attorney's didn't even receive yet. Klöden concluded by
saying: "I hope soon the whole situation will be cleared up."
Astana will not take
action against its 32 year old rider. Astana spokesman Philippe Maertens told German newsagency DPA: "Klöden plausibly assured
us that he has nothing to do with this case. That's why there are no sanctions from our side against Andreas. At the
moment there is no hold for that, but we will keep an eye on the case."