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Wednesday, 6 June, 2001, 21:31 GMT 22:31 UK
Police raid Giro teams' hotels
Jan Ullrich
Ullrich's team hotel was under seige from police
Italy's drug police have raided hotels where teams competing in the Giro d'Italia were staying.

About 200 officers searched the rooms of riders from all 20 teams competing in the Giro after the 17th stage in the northern coastal resort of San Remo, according to a spokesman for one of the teams, Deutsche Telekom.

Eyewitnesses say at least 10 plain-clothed officers entered the Hotel Des Anglais where Jan Ullrich's Telekom team and the Mercatone Uno outfit of Marco Pantani were staying.

There were also further accounts that Pantani's personal masseur, Roberto Pregnaloto, had been escorted by police from the building and had had a bag confiscated from him containing a number of small vials and a rubber glove.

ANSA news agency reported that syringes had been flung from the window of one of the hotels just as police made their raid.

Earlier in the day it emerged that French rider Pascal Herve and Italy's Riccardo Forconi had failed dope tests. They were pulled off the tour.

The swoop represents the biggest in cycling since the 1998 Tour de France, when police launched a series of raids on team hotels and seized a huge quantity of drugs.

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03 Jun 01 |  Other Sports
Belli thrown out of Giro
03 Jun 01 |  Other Sports
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