Dr Richard Freeman charged with breaching two anti-doping rules, according to report

The BBC says the former British Cycling and Team Sky doctor has been charged with ‘possession of a prohibited substance’

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Dr Richard Freeman has been charged with two anti-doping rule breaches, according to a report.

The BBC reports that former British Cycling and Team Sky physician Freeman has been charged by UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) with two offences under the anti-doping rules, as his fitness-to-practice medical tribunal comes to a close.

Freeman is facing a medical misconduct hearing over allegations he ordered testosterone to be delivered to the British Cycling headquarters in 2011 with the intention of administering it to a rider to dope. 

While the doctor has admitted obtaining the 30 sachets of the banned substance, he had denied the product was intended for doping, instead saying he obtained it to treat his colleague Shane Sutton’s erectile dysfunction - a claim Sutton denies. 

On Friday (February 12), the BBC reported that Freeman has been charged by UKAD with “possession of a prohibited substance” and “tampering or attempting to tamper with any part of a doping control,” which would include an investigation. 

According to the report, Freeman is believed to have contested part of the charges and has requested a hearing. 

If he was found guilty of the UKAD charges, Freeman could face up to a four-year ban from working in sport.

Freeman’s Medical Practitioners Tribunal, being held in Manchester, was hearing its final submissions on Friday before a decision is due to be made on his fitness to practice medicine. 

He has admitted 18 of the 22 charges against him, but denies the banned substance was ordered for an athlete to dope, instead claiming he was “bullied” into ordering the testosterone by Shane Sutton to treat Sutton’s erectile dysfunction. Sutton denies this. 

The General Medical Council’s barrister, in summing up its case against Freeman, recently claimed Freeman worked with “sleepers” in British Cycling and Team Sky to buy testosterone to help an athlete dope. 

But his legal representative Mary O’Rourke QC said that Freeman had not obtained the testosterone for an athlete and that he had cooperated fully with the tribunal and hadn’t refused to answer any questions, adding that “he was not the slippery devious, dishonest monster which the GMC’s closing submissions suggested he was.” 

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Cycling Weekly has approached UKAD for comment, but the organisation declined to comment when approached by the BBC

The tribunal continues.

Alex Ballinger
Alex Ballinger

Alex is the digital news editor for CyclingWeekly.com. After gaining experience in local newsrooms, national newspapers and in digital journalism, Alex found his calling in cycling, first as a reporter and now as news editor responsible for Cycling Weekly's online news output.

Since pro cycling first captured his heart during the 2010 Tour de France (specifically the Contador-Schleck battle) and joining CW in 2018, Alex has covered three Tours de France, multiple editions of the Tour of Britain, and the World Championships, while both writing and video presenting for Cycling Weekly. He also specialises in fitness writing, often throwing himself into the deep end to help readers improve their own power numbers. 

Away from journalism, Alex is a national level time triallist, avid gamer, and can usually be found buried in an eclectic selection of books.