Jan Ullrich's lawyers are fighting a demand by German prosecutors to compare the former Tour de France winner's DNA samples as part of a doping investigation.
Bonn prosecutors want to compare a saliva sample Ullrich gave to Swiss authorities in September to blood samples seized in a Spanish doping investigation. But Ullrich's lawyers appealed against the procedure, Bonn district attorney Fred Apostel said Tuesday.
"It's up to the Swiss court now to decide how to proceed," Apostel said. "If it rules in favor of turning over the sample, Ullrich's lawyers can appeal again."
The DNA comparison could prove the use of performance-enhancing drugs or clear Ullrich, who is looking for a new team in time for the start of the Tour de France on July 7.
The 32-year-old German has been without a team since T-Mobile fired him after he was linked to the Spanish doping scandal. Several teams have expressed interest in signing him if cleared, but the German will need a new license to race after turning in his Swiss one.
"Ullrich has the right to appeal against turning over the sample. Why he opposes the comparison is anyone's guess," Apostel said.
The whole judicial procedure could take up to 18 months, he said.
Spanish authorities have agreed to hand over one of the bags of frozen blood found in last April's raid on a Madrid clinic linked to alleged doping of up to 57 cyclists, according to Apostel.
Ullrich and Ivan Basso, the pre-race favorites, were among the riders barred from last year's Tour de France. Tour officials have warned that cyclists linked to the Spanish scandal could be expelled again, reports AP.
Ullrich is under investigation in Germany because of a complaint from a professor that his alleged drug use represented fraud.