The lawsuits are mounting in the aftermath of Lance Armstrong’s confession in January to his long-time use of performance enhancers to win the Tour de France.
A week after the federal government joined a lawsuit against him that could possibly cost Armstrong more than $90 million, the disgraced cyclist was hit with two more suits.
Acceptance Insurance of Omaha filed suit in state district court in Austin seeking to recover $3 million in bonuses the company paid Armstrong’s cycling team for winning the Tours in 1999-2001. Plus, the suit seeks up to $6 million in exemplary damages, plus court costs, interest and attorney fees.
In U.S. District Court in Los Angeles, Robert Martin filed for class-action status, accusing FRS, a company that hired Armstrong as a spokesman, of false advertising. Martin did not specify damages in his suit against Armstrong and FRS, the makers of an energy drink. The company ended its sponsorship of Armstrong in October.
Mark Fabiani, an Armstrong spokesman, said he would have no comment because the cyclist’s attorneys still are reviewing the cases.
The Acceptance Insurance case is similar to the one filed last month by SCA Promotions, which is seeking $12 million from Armstrong. The lawsuit alleges that Armstrong and his management team “fraudulently and aggressively concealed” his use of doping products. It asks that the statute of limitation be waived because it only discovered the potential fraud when Armstrong confessed to Oprah Winfrey in January.
Armstrong’s team management bought insurance policies from both companies to pay out seven-figure bonuses if Armstrong continued to string together Tour wins.
Acceptance paid $3 million for Tour wins in 1999-2001. SCA covered the bonuses in 2002-05.
Meanwhile, Armstrong also is facing lawsuits filed by the Times of London and the readers of his book, “It’s Not About the Bike.”