The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency has brought formal doping charges against cyclist Lance Armstrong.
The Washington Post, which broke the story, reports that as a result "Armstrong has been immediately banned from competition in triathlons."
The Post adds:
"In the 15-page charging letter obtained by The Post, USADA made previously unpublicized allegations against Armstrong, alleging it collected blood samples from Armstrong in 2009 and 2010 that were "fully consistent with blood manipulation including EPO use and/or blood transfusions." Armstrong has never tested positive.
"In February, the U.S. Attorney's Office in Los Angeles ended a nearly two-year investigation into doping allegations involving Armstrong without bringing criminal charges. As part of that investigation, Armstrong's former teammates Floyd Landis and Tyler Hamilton cooperated with federal agents and publicly accused Armstrong of doping."
Armstrong maintained his innocence in a statement released on his website.
"These are the very same charges and the same witnesses that the Justice Department chose not to pursue after a two-year investigation," Armstrong said. "These charges are baseless, motivated by spite and advanced through testimony bought and paid for by promises of anonymity and immunity."