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Victor Conte is the founder and president of Bay Area Laboratory Co-operative (BALCO), a controversial sports nutrition center in Burlingame, California, which the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) says developed the banned steroid tetrahydrogestrinone (THG) with the help of bodybuilding chemist Patrick Arnold. Pursuant to a plea bargain struck with prosecutors, he entered guilty pleas in July 2005 to one count of conspiracy to distribute steroids and a second count of laundering a portion of a check, he was sentenced in October to spend four months in prison and another four on house arrest.

In December 2004, he participated in an interview with Martin Bashir on ABC's 20/20 program, where he admitted to running doping programs, which have broken Olympic records, as well as revealing that: "The whole history of the games is just full of corruption, cover-up, performance-enhancing drug use." [1]

In the interview he implicated, among others, five-time Olympic gold medalist Marion Jones and her partner Tim Montgomery, Kelli White (who later admitted using performance enhancing drugs), British athlete Dwain Chambers, and NFL player Bill Romanowski.

On 21 December 2006, Yahoo Sports reported that one of Conte's initial defense lawyers, Troy Ellerman, had been targeted by the FBI as a possible source of leaks to the media during the Barry Bonds probe.[2] On February 14, 2007, Ellerman pleaded guilty to leaking grand jury testimony.

In May 2007, Conte claimed he was again supplying British athlete turned NFL Europa player for the Hamburg Sea Devils, Dwain Chambers with nutritional supplements again, via his company Scientific Nutrition for Advanced Conditioning.[3]

On December 13, 2007 Conte appeared on CNN before the Mitchell report was officially released.[4]

It was also reported that FBI agents were also the source of leaks.

On March 30, 2008, it was announced by the New York Daily News that Conte is scheduled to write "BALCO: The Straight Dope on Barry Bonds, Marion and What We Can Do to Save Sports" with co-author Nathan Jendrick.

Early life

In the 1970s, Victor played bass guitar in the group Common Ground with cousin Bruce (later of Tower of Power fame) on electric guitar[5]. Victor Conte was a member of Tower of Power itself for a time later in the 1970s, playing bass guitar, and also collaborated during that period with pianist Herbie Hancock. At the time he had the nickname " Walking Fish ."

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