|05-19-2010, 06:40 AM||#1|
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Join Date: May 2003
Location: The Ville
Canadian Dr. with ties to NFL players charged
Canadian Dr. Galea hit with list of charges
BUFFALO, N.Y. — A Canadian doctor whose high-profile clients have included Tiger Woods and Alex Rodriguez was charged Tuesday with bringing unapproved drugs into the United States and unlawfully treating professional athletes.
Dr. Anthony Galea, who is known for using a blood-spinning technique designed to speed recovery from injuries, is accused of injecting at least one current NFL player with Actovegin, a calf's blood derivative that is not approved by the Food and Drug Administration, and providing a retired player with human growth hormone after his playing days had ended.
A criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court in Buffalo charges Galea with smuggling, unlawful distribution of HGH, introducing an unapproved drug into interstate commerce, conspiring to lie to federal agents and conspiracy to defraud the United States.
Galea, who is not authorized to work in the United States, is accused of repeatedly entering the country from 2007-09 to treat professional athletes from Major League Baseball, the NFL and Professional Golfers' Association, U.S. Attorney William Hochul said.
During that time, he billed three football players about $200,000, Hochul said.
"Today's complaint reveals that those responsible for the flow of illegal drugs into our country can come from all walks of life," Hochul said.
No athletes are identified by name in the government's criminal complaint or supporting affidavit, which describes the 50-year-old Toronto doctor traveling to various U.S. cities to meet with athletes in hotel rooms and their homes.
Tennessee Titans quarterback Chris Simms, who played for the Broncos last season, has acknowledged being treated by Galea but said he was not contacted by investigators. In December, Simms described the plasma injections Galea gave him in 2007 while he struggled to recover after having his spleen removed.
"If they want to talk to me, feel free," he said in Nashville on Tuesday. "Listen. I'm a big fan of Dr. Galea. I think he's a great guy. He's helped thousands of people out, not just athletes. He's truly a great doctor. I guess he's made a mistake or two, and I feel bad for him."
Simms said he has not violated any league policies.
If convicted of the U.S. smuggling charge, Galea could face up to 20 years in prison. The other charges carry maximum sentences of three and five years.
Reports have 28 other NFL players connected to Dr. Galea...hopefully none are Broncos.