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Toronto sports doctor enters plea deal

By Eileen Buckley

http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wbfo/local-wbfo-976481.mp3

Buffalo, NY – A Toronto sports doctor accused of treating professional athletics with human grown hormone drugs entered to take a plea deal in a federal court in Buffalo Wednesday afternoon.

51-year-old Dr. Anthony Galeaa agreed to a plea deal in a federal court in Buffalo.

Canadian defense attorney Brian Greenspan emphasized that the plea is only for misbranded drugs, not for performance enhancement drugs.

"I want to make this perfectly clear. There is no allegation of performance enhancement. There is no suggestion of performance enhancement," said Greenspan.

Galea admitted to traveling numerous times over the U.S.-Canadian border to provide medical treatments to professional athletes with misbranded drugs.

"And Dr. Galea has never engaged in performance enhancement. He is a healing physician who has an injury presented to him, and addresses the injury, that is his extend of his involvement with that. That is the extent of his involvement with his entire patients," said Greenspan.

Assistant U.S> Attorney Paul Campana told Judge Richard Arcara that the doctor's patients included golfer Tiger Woods and NFL players Takeo Spikes and Jamal Lewis. But he did not say what type of treatments they received from the doctor. Greenspan confirmed that Woods received treatment but not a human growth hormones.

"And I think in fairness of Tiger Woods. He only received one of the four treatments specified, which is platelet-rich therapy treatment, which is perfectly lawful in Canada and in the United States. It is common place," said Greenspan.

Under the plea deal, Galea has agreed to assist in other federal investigations. He faces a maximum sentence of three years in prison and fine of $250,000 plus forfeiture $275,000.

But the prosecutor told the judge they would recommend a sentence lower than the federal guidelines in exchange for the doctor's cooperation. Galea was released and will be sentenced October 19th.

"This Office, along with our law enforcement partners, will not tolerate attempts to breach the integrity of our nation's borders, or to subvert the border inspection process. We also stand committed to protecting the health and well-being of our citizens by enforcing regulations which identify the type of substances which may be safely injected into the human body," said U.S. Attorney William Hochul. "Here, the defendant admitted to not only bringing unapproved substances into the country repeatedly, but that he also practiced medicine without a license, supervised criminal conduct of others, and obstructed justice through the actions of one of the defendant's Canadian employees. This case should therefore serve as a warning to all that such conduct will be prosecuted."

Under the plea deal, Galea has agreed to forfeiture $275,000. Galea will be sentenced October 19th in federal court in Buffalo.

On June 24, 2010, Mary Anne Catalano, an employee of the defendant in Canada, pleaded guilty before Judge Arcara to making false statements at the border. Catalano is awaiting sentencing in this case.