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  • 10/21 press release from BALCO

    Press Release for Victor and BALCO Laboratories
    October 21, 2003

    In recent days there has been a great deal of media
    attention focused upon allegations of illegal activity
    and misconduct by Mr. Victor Conte, owner and operator
    of a Bay Area laboratory known as BALCO. There
    appears to be an ongoing federal grand jury
    investigation into these allegations to which the
    defense of Mr. Conte is not privy. It is premature
    to comment on such investigation at this time. We
    must all remember that the grand jury is a one sided
    process which is result oriented. The defense has no
    role to play in such a process. However, at the end
    of the day, the government still retains the burden
    proof with regard to any charges contained in any
    possible indictment.

    Unfortunately, the speculation about what may or not
    be contained in a possible indictment appears to be
    fueled by leaks of information the source of which is
    unknown by the defense. Much of what is contained in
    recent media revelations is totally misguided and
    untrue and appears to be premised upon information, or
    misinformation from sources unknown to the defense
    whose reliability is yet to be tested.

    First and foremost, Victor Conte is presumed to be
    innocent. That presumption stays with Mr. Conte
    throughout all of these proceedings and is not
    overcome by speculation and allegations from unknown
    sources. There may come a time in which the
    matters of speculation are tested in the waters of a
    jury trial. If and when that happens, the defense
    intends to prove Mr. Conte‚s innocence of all
    possible charges. Moreover the results of the
    defense‚s own investigation have not been revealed to
    anyone including the government.

    Mr. Conte is a scientist and business man who has
    dedicated his life to helping others including high
    profile athletes. His company, SNAC System, markets
    a nutritional product developed by Mr. Conte known as
    ZMA distributed by more than 50 distributors
    worldwide. ZMA is a contamination free raw material
    manufactured utilizing the highest degree of quality
    control and assurance. Mr. Conte wishes to assure his
    consumers that such product will continue to be
    manufactured and made available to the hundreds of
    thousands of ZMA users presently benefiting from such
    product.

    These are difficult times for Mr. Conte and his family
    and we request that to whatever extent possible, that
    everyone respect their privacy. Information flowing
    from a criminal investigation necessarily takes time
    to digest and consider. Please remember, the defense
    has not yet begun to fight.

    Robert Holley and Troy Ellerman. Legal counsel for
    Victor Conte
    and BALCO Laboratories.



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  • #2
    Re: 10/21 press release from BALCO

    I would like to be the first to say that if and when Mr. Conte goes to trial, he is found not guilty (for whatever reason). I think this one is way too slippery for the prosecution to nail.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: 10/21 press release from BALCO

      Buzz here is that he will be found guilty, but not for any of the reasons that would bring joy to this board (or the sport in general). Rumor has it that the major thrust of the Feds' involvement is income-tax related.

      As far as I know, the "similar-substances rule" is fine for WADA and USADA and the rest of the acronym police, but I have to wonder if a substance that's not on any list of proscribed by law stuff would even get prosecuted, let alone generate guilt.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: 10/21 press release from BALCO

        >Buzz here is that he will be found guilty, but
        >not for any of the reasons that would bring joy
        >to this board (or the sport in general). Rumor
        >has it that the major thrust of the Feds'
        >involvement is income-tax related.

        Maybe they know that. If all else fails, nail him for tax evasion. Just ask Al.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: 10/21 press release from BALCO

          Mr. Nitti

          What the grapevine is saying, just to clarify, is that this is not analagous to Big Al, where they discovered it was easier to go the tax route than to bust the criminal side of the organization. In this instance, it's unclear that there is even any criminal activity going on (other than tax-related).

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: 10/21 press release from BALCO

            >Mr. Nitti

            What the grapevine is saying, just
            >to clarify, is that this is not analagous to Big
            >Al, where they discovered it was easier to go the
            >tax route than to bust the criminal side of the
            >organization. In this instance, it's unclear that
            >there is even any criminal activity going on
            >(other than tax-related).

            I'm sure you're likely right. It's the IRS guys that have made this thing look serious right from the start but you'd think that they could prove that case without hauling 40 athletes down there to testify to the grand jury unless they are going to say that they handed envelopes full of cash over to the Walkin' Fish.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: 10/21 press release from BALCO

              >the "similar-substances rule" is fine for
              >WADA and USADA and the rest of the acronym
              >police, but I have to wonder if a substance
              >that's not on any list of proscribed by law stuff
              >would even get prosecuted, let alone generate
              >guilt.

              Two items stated before in other threads:

              1. It is not just a "related substance", but an actual anabolic steroid. All anabolic steroids are banned, on the list or not.

              2. Possession and/or distribution of anabolic steroids (class III controlled substances?) carries similar penalties to trafficking cocaine.

              I can't verify the legal aspect of the second point, but if it is accurate then that answers your initial statement.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: 10/21 press release from BALCO

                This story has an actual date when Bonds will testify-Dec 4/03.


                http://www.cbc.ca/pcgi-bin/templates/sp ... alco031021

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: 10/21 press release from BALCO

                  Just a clarification- possession charges would be against the distributor. Very unlikely athletes would have a large enough stash to interest prosecutors. Also, it will take some scientific evidence to show that THG is an anabolic steroid according to the law. It isn't a hard thing to show but it has to be proven.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: 10/21 press release from BALCO

                    >Also, it will take some scientific
                    >evidence to show that THG is an anabolic steroid
                    >according to the law. It isn't a hard thing to
                    >show but it has to be proven.

                    It seems to me that, in order to test for the presence of THG, you need to know how it reacts with other chemicals, and to do that you need to know its chemical make-up in the first place.

                    Besides, I would think Catlin wouldn't bother going out of his way to devise a testing procedure if it WEREN'T a banned substance!

                    I would suspect the nature of the beast is pretty cut-and-dry at this stage. No doubt the scientific evidence is there.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: 10/21 press release from BALCO

                      <I would suspect the nature of the
                      >beast is pretty cut-and-dry at this stage. No
                      >doubt the scientific evidence is there.>>


                      The scientific evidence was there for OJ as well; it's the jury that needs to be convinced, not Dr. Catlin.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: 10/21 press release from BALCO

                        Seems like there's still a lot of confusion in all these discussions as to the distinction between being "banned" by sports authorities and being illegal. Major difference in the eyes of the law, obviously.

                        >Besides, I would think
                        >Catlin wouldn't bother going out of his way to
                        >devise a testing procedure if it WEREN'T a banned
                        >substance!

                        I would suspect the nature of the
                        >beast is pretty cut-and-dry at this stage. No
                        >doubt the scientific evidence is there.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: 10/21 press release from BALCO

                          "Opinions are like assholes, everybody has one"

                          I just wonder what the end of the story will be.

                          Oh... by the way, will the WADA and the others also retest for NORBOLETHONE? (similar case right? the underworld knows that it was been used the last 6 years by many elite athletes). Because if they do... then we would have a lot to talk about.....

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: 10/21 press release from BALCO

                            > Also, it will take some scientific
                            >evidence to show that THG is an anabolic steroid
                            >according to the law. It isn't a hard thing to
                            >show but it has to be proven.

                            Great point, Ben. If this THG stuff was any good, why didn't we see better times this year and clear group of THG doped athletes dominating performances ?

                            I'm not saying it makes them any less cheats, etc.,. but it might be much harder to prove it is an anabolic steroid in the absence of Ben Johnson like performances on the track.

                            Lawyers will be the only winners out of this.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: 10/21 press release from BALCO

                              My point was/is that it isn't a done deal, not that the stuff isn't a steroid. Just that, in court, if a substance isn't on the controlled substance list it has to be shown that it should be a controlled substance (it has the attributes of a steroid, etc.).

                              Comment

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