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Freeman’s lawyer requests Sutton witness statement reportedly held by Daily Mail as ‘insurance’ against possible defamation claims by Freeman, Wiggins or Brailsford

Dr Richard Freeman has accused former British Cycling and Team Sky head coach, Shane Sutton, of ‘bullying’ him into ordering testosterone for the treatment of erectile dysfunction. The General Medical Council (GMC) argues that the substance was in fact used for "micro-dosing" a cyclist to improve their performance. Sutton also denies Freeman’s claim.

Dr Freeman has admitted ordering 30 sachets of Testogel from medical supplier Fit4Sport in 2011 and has also admitted trying to cover it up and lying to UK Anti-Doping about it in 2017.

However, the BBC reports that he denies the substance was ordered for an athlete and administered for performance-enhancing purposes.

"Shane Sutton specifically requested that I prescribed him Testogel," said Freeman in a witness statement read at his medical tribunal. "I was bullied into prescribing it for him."

Sutton said that while he did receive treatment and prescriptions from Freeman, the Testogel was not for him.

The GMC says Sutton’s medical records “do not support” Freeman’s explanation. Its lawyer, Simon Jackson QC, said there was “a history between the two” over repayment of the cost of a long-haul flight.

Sutton is scheduled to appear as a witness on Monday and Tuesday.

Another of today’s developments saw Freeman’s lawyer, Mary O’Rourke QC, announce her intention to ask for a Shane Sutton witness statement dating from 2016 that is reportedly held by the Daily Mail.

She said the statement was provided as the paper’s “insurance policy” against any potential claims for defamation by Sir Bradley Wiggins, Dr Freeman or Sir Dave Brailsford. “Its relevance is that it contains a number of lies.”

O’Rourke is seeking to discredit Sutton and said the statement was “totally inconsistent” with what he told the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport select committee for its investigation into doping in sport.

The hearing continues.

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