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Italian Rider Questioned for Drugs

July 31, 1998

LILLE, France (AP) _ Authorities looking into drug use during the Tour de France placed Italian rider Rodolfo Massi under formal investigation Friday, one step short of charging him.

He was the first rider to be taken into custody for questioning, although he was later released on bail.

Along with Massi, of the Casino team, Dr. Nicolas Terrados Cepada of the Spanish team Once, was also placed under formal investigation.

Altogether, five people have been placed under formal investigation in the scandal. The other three were Festina team director Bruno Roussel, trainer Willy Voet and the team’s Belgian doctor Eric Ryckaert, who remained in custody.

Massi and Terrados were placed under formal investigation for supposedly breaking a 1989 law against use drugs during sports competitions. They were later released.

Massi’s lawyer, Eric Dupont-Moretti, criticized officials for ``not having waited for the end of the Tour de France to question him.″

Authorities requested that Massi find a residence in France within a month, pending the results of the investigation.

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