Lance Armstrong sued a lot of people who accused him of doping, including a Texas-based promotions company that now wants its money back.
No one was more stunned to hear Armstrong's admissions to Oprah Winfrey this week than Dallas attorney Jeff Tillotson. He was watching with his client, SCA Promotions.
SCA Promotions paid Armstrong $12 million in promotional money for winning three of the seven Tour de France titles. But it tried to withhold more than $7 million for one of the wins because of the doping allegations.
"In the first three minutes of the interview he admitted everything he had been denying to us in our lawsuit under oath for years," Tillotson said.
Tillotson said Armstrong came off as arrogant and cocky in the Oprah interview, but he was much more defiant in the deposition in November of 2005. And he told a different story then.
"It can't be any clearer than I've never taken drugs. The incidents like that could not have happened. How clear is that?" Armstrong said.
SCA Promotions is now threatening to sue him if he doesn't return all $12 million.
Tillotson said Armstrong's confession leaves him open to legal action by many others as well.
"He's in a world of hurt," he said.
For the attorney, it's not just that he lied and cheated.
"The remarkable thing about Mr. Armstrong's conduct was he just didn't go after his enemies and detractors. He buried his friends," Tillotson said. "And when you leave that kind of collateral damage you're gonna have a lot of people standing up at the end of the day coming after you."
The only time Armstrong was ever questioned about doping under oath was in Tillotson's deposition. It went to the United States Anti-Doping Agency, which kept after him and eventually stripped him of his Tour de France titles.
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