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Mitchell says Clemens’ former trainer ‘truthful’ about steroids

WASHINGTON (CNN) — George Mitchell, the senator-turned-baseball-investigator who last month linked dozens of players to steroid use, on Tuesday told a House committee that he firmly believes the former trainer who says he injected pitching ace Roger Clemens with performance enhancers.

Clemens, the seven-time Cy Young winner who quickly became the poster boy for the Mitchell Report, was named along with home run king Barry Bonds and former all-stars Andy Pettitte, Mo Vaughn, Paul Lo Duca and Eric Gagne.

Also named was Houston Astros slugger Miguel Tejada, who committee Chairman Henry Waxman will ask the Justice Department to investigate to determine if he committed perjury when he said he never used steroids and that he knew of no players who did.

According to the Mitchell report, which gave details on the pervasive use of steroids in baseball, Clemens in 1998 asked former trainer Brian McNamee, then a strength coach with the Toronto Blue Jays, to inject him with the steroid Winstrol in Clemens’ Toronto apartment.

McNamee knew the substance was Winstrol because the vials Clemens gave him were so labeled, the report says. McNamee injected Clemens approximately four times in the buttocks over a several-week period with needles that Clemens provided.

Clemens has denied McNamee’s account and filed a defamation suit against the former trainer earlier this month. Clemens addresses allegations of steroid use

However, Mitchell told legislators Tuesday that he believes McNamee’s account.

We believe that the statements provided to us were truthful, the former Senate majority leader said.

McNamee signed an agreement with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of California promising to cooperate, Mitchell told congressmen.

No truthful statements can be used against him in any federal prosecution by that office. If, however, he should be untruthful in any statements made pursuant to that agreement, he may be charged with criminal violations, including making false statements, which is a felony, Mitchell said.

McNamee and Clemens are scheduled to appear before another meeting of the same House panel February 13. An attorney for Clemens said he will be there.

In opening statements Tuesday, Chairman Waxman said he was asking the Justice Department to investigate whether Tejada lied three years ago when he told the committee he had never used performance-enhancing substances and had no knowledge of other players using or even talking about steroids.

The Mitchell report, however, linked to Tejada to drug use.

The conflict between Tejada’s testimony and the Mitchell report, Waxman said, is stark and fundamental to the committee’s 2005 investigation. As a result, ranking member Tom Davis and I will be writing the Department of Justice today to request an investigation into whether Mr. Tejada gave truthful answers to the committee.

Tejada was the American League MVP in 2002 when he played for the Oakland Athletics. He was recently traded to the Houston Astros by the Baltimore Orioles.

Justice Department spokesman Peter Carr said Tuesday the department will review and respond to the letter from Chairman Waxman and Rep. Davis, but offered no further comment.

Tuesday’s hearing also featured testimony from baseball Commissioner Bud Selig and Donald Fehr, executive director of the Major League Baseball Players Association, a union.

The report was commissioned by Selig and compiled from a 20-month, multimillion-dollar investigation that included more than 700 interviews and a review of thousands of documents.
Mitchell says Clemens’ former trainer ‘truthful’ about steroids – found here.

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January 15, 2008 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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