The government is entitled to triple damages and Landis would receive 15 to 30 percent if he prevails, which has raised the question of why Armstrong is coming forward now.
“The proof has reached a level where Armstrong can’t hide anymore,” said Melissa Visconti, a lawyer at the Ferraro firm in Coral Gables and a former federal prosecutor. “He’s cutting his losses by saying ‘I’m coming clean.’ There’s a certain value in his credibility going forward when a judge or jury asks, ‘Why would we believe you when you kept on denying all that evidence?’
“Staying silent doesn’t work in the court of public opinion. He and his legal and PR team are trying to salvage some of his believability. Frankly, it’s surprising it took this long.”
Armstrong is also expected to spread the blame by citing team management and cycling officials for corruption.
And, he will be questioned anew about whether his doping played a role in his testicular cancer diagnosis when he was 25. Armstrong had long denied a conversation in his hospital room in which he told doctors he had been using steroids and other drugs. Betsy Andreu and Armstrong teammate Frankie Andreu later testified about what they heard. At the time Betsy warned Frankie not to dope because it might have caused Armstrong’s cancer, which metastasized to his brain.
“While there is no definitive link between testicular cancer and anabolic steroid use, steroids definitely can contribute to the progression of cancer,” said Dr. Ernesto Pretto, a professor of anesthesiology at the University of Miami’s Miller School of Medicine.
Pretto cited a study from Pharmacological Research journal entitled "Doping with growth hormone/IGF-1, steroids and erythropoietin: Is there a cancer risk?"
“He may have had a predisposition, but his cancer was rare and rapidly growing,” Pretto said. “I think he needs to ask, ‘Was it worth it?’ and warn about the serious side effects of drug use.
“We have graphic commercials on the consequences of smoking. Part of Lance’s legacy could be explaining the consequences of doping.”