Seven British citizens were among 26 people arrested in Spain as part of a police investigation into a large organised doping ring, it was announced on Monday.

The director of a cycling team containing ‘former world and european champions’ was also arrested as part of the investigation. 

During raids in Madrid, Andalusia and elsewhere in Spain, police recovered 700,000 doses of banned performance-enhancing substances including human growth hormone (HGH) and erythropoietin (EPO).

An extensive laboratory was discovered where human growth hormone and drugs to treat erectile dysfunction were being processed for sale via the internet.

In an official statement, Spanish police described the ring as the “largest international organisation acting in Spain for the illegal trafficking of drugs, growth hormone and doping substances”.