Jan Ullrich, the winner of the 1997 Tour de France, has again been arrested – this time for allegedly assaulting a prostitute in Frankfurt. Ullrich had reportedly travelled to Germany for therapy after being arrested in Mallorca last week following an altercation with his neighbour.
A spokeswoman for the Frankfurt public prosecutor's office confirmed to FAZ.net that Ullrich had been arrested.
Ullrich was staying in a luxury hotel in Frankfurt and had a visit from an escort. They got into an argument and he is alleged to have choked her.
He was said to have been under the influence of alcohol and drugs at the time.
Ullrich was also arrested last Friday after he jumped over a fence into his neighbour’s garden and threatened him.
Film director and actor Til Schweiger was hosting a party at the time and witnesses report that Ullrich brawled with at least one person there. A judge subsequently issued a restraining order warning Ullrich to keep away from Schweiger.
Ullrich says that separation from his wife and children has thrown him into the “deepest despair.” Schweiger appears to agree. He said the two had previously been close but that their relationship had deteriorated following the break-up of Ullrich’s marriage.
He said that Ullrich, “had almost become a family member but when his wife left him he started taking amphetamines: he would only sleep for two hours.
“He’d start drinking beer at 6am and went on like that until the evening. He also told me that he had a prescription for cocaine."
Ullrich said: "The separation from my wife Sara, and consequently from my children, has thrown me into the deepest despair.
“I haven’t seen my boys since Christmas, and we also find it difficult to speak to each other. This extreme situation has made me do and take things that I very much regret.”
He added: “For my children’s sake, I’m undergoing therapy. I became agoraphobic. I couldn’t sleep. This has been one of the toughest episodes of my life.”
Ullrich retired from cycling in 2007. As well as his Tour de France win, he was runner-up five times and also won the gold medal in the road race at the Sydney Olympic Games in 2000 as well as two world time trial championships.
He was twice banned for doping, the first time in 2002 when he tested positive for amphetamines. On that occasion he was handed a minimal six-month suspension since the German federation ruled he had used the drug for recreational purposes rather to enhance performance.
In 2012, the German's links to Operacion Puerto saw him retroactively banned from August 22 2011, and all results gained since May 2005 removed from his Palmarès. He admitted to blood doping in 2013.
Last year, a court in Switzerland fined Ullrich and gave him a 21-month suspended prison sentence for drink-driving and speeding.
He was found to have been ‘heavily drunk and medicated’ when he crashed into two cars in the village of Happerswil.
In 2002, he lost his driving licence for a year and was fined two months’ salary after knocking out a rack of bikes with his Porsche 911 outside a Freiburg hotel in the early hours of the morning.
He fled the scene, but a witness took the number of his car and informed the police. When they took a blood sample from him, he was found to have three times the permitted level of alcohol in his blood when driving.