ROME -- Italian cyclist Michele Scarponi was suspended for
18 months Friday for his involvement in the Spanish doping scandal
known as Operation Puerto.
The Italian cycling federation's disciplinary commission heeded
a recommendation by the Italian Olympic Committee's anti-doping
Scarponi was spared the maximum two-year ban because he
cooperated with the investigation, the federation said.
Scarponi, who has 10 career victories, was accused of "the use
or attempted use of a banned substance or method" and of
"possession of banned substances and methods."
The 27-year-old rider from the Acqua & Sapone team has admitted
involvement in the scandal but denied doping. The federation last
month banned 2006 Giro d'Italia champion Ivan Basso for two years
on similar charges.
Scarponi's ban ends Nov. 15, 2008, taking into account that the
rider has been suspended since May 15.
Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press
This story is from ESPN.com's automated news wire. Wire index