Saturday, December 9 2023

In 2013, LeBron James was among a number of professional athletes investigated by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) for allegedly using performance-enhancing drugs (PEDs) from the now-defunct rejuvenation clinic Biogenesis of America.

The federal Biogenesis investigation was dubbed “Operation Strikeout.” A disgruntled ex-employee, irritated over missing back-pay, leaked clinic records that were “clear in describing the firm’s real business: selling performance-enhancing drugs.”

As a result, the MLB sued six people connected to Biogenesis, accusing them of damaging the sport by providing banned substances to its players. In July 2013, 14 involved players received lengthy suspensions of 50 or more games (almost a third of a season). Likewise, a total of 21 players were suspended.

The most notable MLB players involved included Alex Rodriguez, Nelson Cruz, and Ryan Braun. Other baseball players listed were Antonio Bastardo, Everth Cabrera, Francisco Cervelli, Jhonny Peralta, Jordany Valdespin, Jesús Montero, César Puello, Sergio Escalona, Fernando Martínez, Fautino de los Santos, and Jordan Norberto.

The investigation also led to the conviction of clinic mastermind Anthony “Tony” Bosch, a biochemist and program director, and seven associates. Tony’s father, Dr. Pedro Bosch, was listed as the medical director. Bosch’s younger brother, attorney Ashley Bosch, was listed as managing member.

Not to mention, Porter Fischer was listed as marketing director. Several employees quit in the fall of 2012 after they were not paid. The clinic closed months later in December 2012.

Former Miami Heat star LeBron James was investigated by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) in 2013 for PEDs, never did anything wrong in biogenesis probe

Furthermore, what had not yet been known at the time in more than 1,400 pages of unredacted federal investigative documents were the names of other athletes and prominent figures. The alleged drug users ranged from world champion boxers and wrestlers to fitness gurus. As a matter of fact, entertainers and police officers were also featured.

Ernest “Randy” Mims, a close friend and business manager of LeBron James, was among the individuals mentioned in the 1,400 pages. Former WWE star Paul “The Big Show” Wight, ex-boxing champion Shannon Briggs, and sports trainer David Alexander were listed as well.

According to report by ESPN, federal authorities found nothing to suggest that Alexander or Mims provided any PEDs to any athletes. However, both had a relationship with James. Their involvement caused investigators to look at whether James might have used PEDs.

Moreover, DEA agents learned that Alexander was the personal trainer of James’ wife. Kevin Stanfill, the former DEA investigator, said that because of the duo’s connection, the DEA examined whether Alexander’s actions had any connection to James and determined that they did not.

“I can tell you that we looked into everything just because we knew this day would come. … She wasn’t getting any supplements, anything like that. … There was never any indication that LeBron James did anything wrong.”

David Alexander was the personal trainer of James’ wife, Savannah James; his wife did not receive supplements

Mims, 47, was described in the investigative documents as the “manager of LeBron James (Miami Heat basketball player).” Carlos Acevedo, a former Bosch business partner, ran his own performance-enhancing drug operation. Acevedo and eventually became an informant for federal agents in the drug distribution case and was later was convicted for his role.

Additionally, Mims had purchased testosterone, metabolism-boosting injections, and a blood draw by an unlicensed phlebotomist from Acevedo. Federal documents describe his purchases as “for his personal use.”

Acevedo told authorities Mims paid him $300 a purchase. Mims remained a client for about two months before he cut business ties with him after complaining about how the drugs made him feel.

In the end, Mims was never charged with any crime and LeBron James never failed a drug test.

Earlier this year in March, James was accused of using PEDs by former UFC star and self-confessed drug cheat Chael Sonnen. Of course, Sonnen claimed he and LeBron have the same “drug guy”.

“Other basketball players will hear about what LeBron does and go, ‘That doesn’t matter.’ If you knew what these performance enhancers did, you’d know it does matter,” Sonnen said in a new episode of the Flagrant podcast.

“We have the same drug guy, I know exactly what he’s doing,” Sonnen claimed. “EPO [Erythropoietin] matters, it’s the reason LeBron takes it. It matters. EPO increases your red blood cells, which gives you the endurance to play all game long. … It’s the king of performance enhancers. EPO is king to everything. That’s why cyclists do it.”

Even if it’s true, LeBron James has still never failed a drug test. In fact, Lamar Odom was one of the few NBA players to be suspended twice for violating the league’s anti-drug policy. Besides, he admitted to using marijuana after the suspension.

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Source: Basketball Insider


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