(NEW YORK) — Facing a federal criminal investigation and a deadline Wednesday night to tell all under oath to anti-doping authorities or lose his last chance at reducing his lifetime sporting ban, Lance Armstrong now may cooperate.
His apparent 11th-hour about-face, according to the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA), means he now might testify under oath and give full details to USADA of how he cheated for so long.
“We have been in communication with Mr. Armstrong and his representatives and we understand that he does want to be part of the solution and assist in the effort to clean up the sport of cycling,” USADA CEO Travis T. Tygart said in a written statement Wednesday evening. “We have agreed to his request for an additional two weeks to work on details to hopefully allow for this to happen.”
The news of Armstrong’s unexpected cooperation came a day after ABC News reported he was in the crosshairs of federal criminal investigators. According to a high-level source, “agents are actively investigating Armstrong for obstruction, witness tampering and intimidation” for allegedly threatening people who tried to tell the truth about his cheating.
The case was reignited by Armstrong’s confession last month to Oprah Winfrey that he doped his way to all seven of his Tour de France titles, telling Winfrey he used performance-enhancing drugs throughout his career and then lied about it. He made the confession after years of vehement denials that he cheated.
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Stephen Collinson, CNN
Jason Hanna, CNN
Jethro Mullen, Ravi Hiranand and Frank Pallotta, CNN