July 12, 2012

MARSEILLE, France (AP) -- Former Tour de France rider Remy Di Gregorio and another suspect were placed under preliminary investigation in connection with a doping investigation when they appeared in Marseille court on Thursday, a judicial officer said.

In French law, preliminary investigation is a step short of being charged, but they will have to answer for it in court. The next court appearance was not made public. The judicial officer requested anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly about an ongoing investigation.

Di Gregorio was arrested and suspended by his Cofidis team on the Tour rest day on Tuesday. He's suspected of possession of doping products or equipment prohibited without medical justification.

"I can still look at myself in the mirror. I have never doped," the 26-year-old from Marseille said on his way out of the courthouse.

The second man placed under preliminary investigation is suspected of administering a banned substance or procedure to an athlete and illegally practicing medicine.

Di Gregorio was in 35th place after Monday's ninth stage. He turned pro in 2005, and was once considered one of the most promising young French riders.

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