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The U.S. Postal Service has decided to sue disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong for prior sponsorship money, claiming he was unjustly enriched.
Armstrong, who was stripped of all titles he'd won since 1998, received approximately $40 million over the course of six years from the USPS, and now they want their money back, reports CNN.
If the USPS is successful, they may collect up to triple their sponsorship money. But it all may hinge on whether Armstrong was unjustly enriched.
During USPS Sponsorship
The now-stripped Tour de France winner Armstrong has admitted to using steroids and blood boosters during his sponsorship by the USPS in order to win, reports the Associated Press.
The federal government's suit is based on the idea that by doping during his sponsorship with the USPS, he was violating the terms of their contract by both cheating and attempting to cover it up.
USPS alleges that any money he received while cheating was in fact unjust enrichment.
What Is Unjust Enrichment?
Unjust enrichment refers to a situation where an individual is unjustly receiving money from another person or company, often due to fraud.
Because the USPS claims that Armstrong lied to them by doping during his races and continuing to cover it up, every penny he received from his USPS sponsorship is being claimed as unjust enrichment.
Armstrong Fires Back
In response to the lawsuit, the former "Livestrong" spokesman insists that whatever the government paid him, he made far more for them over the years.
Armstrong's attorney believes the lawsuit is "opportunistic and insincere" because the USPS was profiting off Armstrong's success, reports NBC News.
Responding to these claims of profit for the government, an attorney for one of Armstrong's former teammates stated that whatever money Armstrong may have made for the USPS is tainted by the cheating and doping scandal that surrounds his career.
The USPS' Lance Armstrong lawsuit was filed in federal court in Washington, D.C. It also names Armstrong's former team director and his team's management company as defendants, according to the AP.