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by Shane Stokes
September 16, 2017
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Jan Ullrich, Santa Rosa, California, October 2016. Photo: Andy Bokanev.
The 2007 Tour de France winner Jan Ullrich has avoided a prison sentence over a drunk driving and speeding case dating back three years, being served with a 21 month suspended sentence by a Swiss court. According to Swiss news agency ATS, he was also fined 10,000 Swiss francs (8,707 euros) by the Weinfelden Court in the canton of Thurgau. He lived there until the start of 2017.
The offence occurred in May 2014 when he smashed into the back of a car which was waiting at a traffic stop sign. The force of the impact caused that car to overturn and land in a field, with Ullrich’s vehicle retaining enough force to also hit a second stationary car.
Last November the court heard that Ullrich was travelling at 132 kilometres per hour in an 80 zone. Had he been going eight kilometres per hour faster, he would have been handed a standard prison sentence. Ullrich pleaded guilty at the trial and also accepted that he had consumed alcohol.
Tests conducted after the accident showed that he had 1.8 milligrams of alcohol in his blood at the time of the accident. Commenting afterwards on his website, Ullrich reflected on the outcome. “I accept the verdict of 21 months on probation and 10,000 francs of fines pronounced by the judges,” he said.
“I am very relieved that the procedure is finally finished. Three years and four months is an unusually long time for the conclusion of such a case. I am glad and grateful that nobody was seriously injured in the accident and I can only repeat that I regret this mistake very much.”