Lance Armstrong has been ordered to pay $10m to SCA Promotions, theTexas-based company which insured his bonuses for three of the seven editions of the Tour de France he won between 1999 and 2005.
Those wins were taken away from Armstrong when he was banned from sport for life in 2012, and today’s decision by an arbitration panel in effect takes away another of his victories.
That's the legal one achieved in 2006, when SCA, which had initially withheld the bonuses from him as allegations of doping began to surface, reached an out of court settlement with him.
While the tribunal panel which heard the case was unable to overturn that earlier decision, which had resulted in SCA having to pay him $9.5 million plus $2.5 million in costs, it has ordered Armstrong to pay$10 million.
Armstrong and Tailwaind Sports, which was the management company of his former US Postal Service team, have repeatedly sought without success to have the case, reopened in October 2013, set aside.
In a statement, SCA said: "The award, which must be paid directly to SCA, is believed to be the largest award of sanctions assessed against an individual in American judicial history.
"According to the arbitrators' written ruling, the sanctions award punishes Armstrong for 'an unparalleled pageant of international perjury, fraud and conspiracy'."
It added: "SCA's dispute with Armstrong is not over.
"It has a currently pending lawsuit in Dallas state district court where it is pursuing additional claims against Lance Armstrong and Bill Stapleton." his agent.
Following the United States Anti-Doping Agency’s Reasoned Decision published in October 2012 and Armstrong’s confession of doping early the following year, the 43-year-old, once worth $125 million, has seen sponsors such as Trek, Oakley, Nike and Michelob terminate their contracts, and has also been ousted from the board of Livestrong, the charity he founded as he battled cancer in the late 1990s.
Besides SCA, the Sunday Times also successfully sued Armstrong for around £1 million relating to a libel case he had brought against the newspaper and its chief sorts reported David Walsh a decade earlier and which had been settled out of court.
The whistleblower action initially brought by former US Postal rider Floyd Landis which alleges that government money, in the form of sponsorship of the team, was misused could be more damaging still in financial terms for Armstrong.
The US Department of Justice has joined the action, which could result in a potential fine of three times the amount involved – and with $30 million the aggregate sum provided in sponsorship during the period in question, the case could be very costly indeed to him.
Simon joined road.cc as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.