New York: Federal investigators appear to be getting their hands on more evidence that strengthen the doping allegations against champion cyclist Lance Armstrong who has won the Tour de France seven times.
The investigators renewed their probe since former teammate and 2006 Tour de France winner Floyd Landis alleged in May that Armstrong and others took performance-enhancing drugs to get an advantage over their opponents.
Some riders have supported accusations that Armstrong along with his former teammates engaged in systematic doping, as well as provided more details on the matter, according to The New York Times who spoke with one rider.
This former teammate said he had told investigators about some of his own drug use, as well as alleged widespread cheating that US Postal Service team engaged in, which he said was done with Armstrong`s knowledge and encouragement.
In May, Landis accused Armstrong of encouraging doping and that the team had sold its bikes to help finance an expensive doping programme. Armstrong has denied the allegations.
Bryan D Daly, a defence lawyer representing Armstrong, said cyclists who claimed that Armstrong doped were lying.
"They just want them to incriminate Lance Armstrong and that`s my concern," Daly said, as reported by NYT.
Daly said the prosecutors and US Anti-Doping Agency was putting pressure on Armstrong`s former teammates to nail the cyclist who is considered to be a remarkable athlete for dominating his sports well beating testicular cancer.
"If Lance Armstrong came in second in those Tour de France races, there`s no way that Lance Armstrong would be involved in these cases," Daly said, adding "I think that the concern is that they are caught up in the pursuit of a celebrity to catch him in a lie."
Armstrong has previously said he will deny dope involvement "As long as I live."