Thorpe drops defamation suit against publisher
Former Australian swimmer Ian Thorpe has dropped a defamation suit against one of five French defendants over reports of an irregular doping test result in 2006, Australian Associated Press reported Monday.
Thorpe is suing French sports newspaper L'Equipe, the paper's publisher and journalist Damien Ressiot, who wrote the article published in March 2007.
L'Equipe said Thorpe gave a urine sample in May 2006 which showed abnormal levels of testosterone and a luteinizing hormone, both of which are on the list of banned drugs.
Thorpe, five-times Olympic gold medalist and regarded as one of the greatest swimmers of all time, is seeking compensation for damage to his reputation.
He retired from the sport in November 2006 and was cleared of doping by the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority. Swimming's ruling body FINA also abandoned an investigation due to insufficient evidence.
Thorpe's solicitor Tony O'Reilly told the New South Wales Supreme Court that his client had withdrawn the case against Hachette Filipacchi Media, one of the five parties named in the original claim.
"They have satisfied us that they are a shareholder rather than a principal publisher," O'Reilly said.
The matter is due to return to court on December 15.