Miguel Ángel López (Astana-Qazaqstan) at the 2022 Giro d'Italia.

Miguel Ángel López is being investigated for alleged drug trafficking

The Colombian was met off his flight back to Europe by police who are investigating him for his connection to the so-called 'Maynar case'.

by Kit Nicholson

photography by Getty Images

Miguel Ángel López is reportedly under investigation for alleged drug trafficking and his connection to a Dr Marcos Maynar, whose career has been punctuated with doping cases.

One of Astana-Qazaqstan’s marquee riders, López was returning to Europe to resume his season – he’s due to start the one-day Prueba Villafranca-Ordiziako Klasika on Monday, his first race back since abandoning the Giro d’Italia on stage 4 – but was met at the Adolfo Suárez airport in Madrid by agents of the Central Operations Unit (UCO), of the Judicial Police Service of the Civil Guard.

The 28-year-old was apparently already implicated in the ‘Maynar case’ and already has a lawyer assigned to defend him. López was originally summoned as a witness for an alleged crime of the distribution of medicines which are banned in Spain. However, his status has reportedly been changed from ‘witness’ to ‘under investigation’, putting him under the spotlight as a possible perpetrator of the same.

López is expected to appear in court in Cáceres in the autumn, shortly after he’s due to lead Astana-Qazaqstan at the Vuelta a España.

Who is Marcos Maynar?

The doctor with whom López is allegedly connected is a professor at the University of Extremadura, working in the Physiology Laboratory of the Faculty of Sports Sciences. Maynar’s professional career has spanned a number of sports, and is littered with doping cases involving anabolic steroids and EPO. However, he does not currently have any sanctions in force from any governing bodies, including the UCI.

Maynar was arrested on May 11 of this year under charges of drug trafficking and money laundering, but was released after giving a statement in Cáceres.

This story is still unfolding…

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