Freeman denies trying to remove laptop as tribunal takes bizarre turn

The former Team Sky and British Cycling doctor Richard Freeman will face questions on Tuesday over whether he gave a “testosterone top-up” to a rider, as well as medical data relating to a Tour de France winner, a tribunal has been told.

Questions were also raised on Monday about Freeman’s mental health following a bizarre incident during the lunch break, in which he attempted to walk away with a laptop said to contain riders’ records after it failed to charge.

Earlier there were more delays to the prolonged case, which is assessing Freeman’s fitness to practise, after the doctor also forgot his password.

When the case finally got under way again Freeman’s QC Mary O’Rourke told the Medical Practitioners’ Tribunal Service in Manchester: “There was an incident downstairs at lunch where he tried to take that laptop, put it in his own bag and walk away with it.”

However, Freeman – who had one of his laptops stolen, admitted to destroying another, and had been unable to access the hard drive on a third – denied he had attempted to take his laptop home and insisted his mental health was fine.

“I didn’t snatch the bag,” he replied. “I put it in the travelling case it came in because I was frustrated. I was going to take it away and charge it myself.”

Freeman then told the tribunal he wanted to continue giving evidence.

However, O’Rourke told the tribunal it was in Freeman’s best interests to end the day early. “Dr Freeman’s solicitor had to intervene. Mr Eastwood came in and said he should not give any more evidence today. I am worried about him.”

Freeman has admitted 18 of 22 charges against him, including ordering 30 sachets of Testogel to British Cycling headquarters and lying about it. However, he denies the central charge of ordering testosterone in order to enhance a rider’s performance.

Earlier Freeman admitted he had become frustrated after he and his legal team had accompanied a British Cycling lawyer to a side room at the Medical Practitioners’ Tribunal Service.

“I came here Thursday to give evidence and I didn’t,” he explained. “I came here Friday. I have given just 45 minutes of evidence this morning. I came down to room 4.7 at lunchtime and there were three lawyers sat down, saying they have wiggled the lead and it won’t go on.”

O’Rourke reassured him by saying: “We have found a working lead now.”

An apparently confused Freeman then said he was not sure why he would need to look at his laptop.

“It was looking at records for a rider whose level of 3.4 jumped to 7.2 nmol/L and jumped back again,” O’Rourke responded. “You had indicated you would need to see your laptop. We had agreed you would look at the laptop to see what was on it so if you were questioned about a particular rider or result, you would be aware of it.”

The tribunal continues.


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