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Doped-up athletes sue

The week's news at a glance.

Hamburg, Germany

Nearly 200 Olympic athletes from the former East Germany are suing the German pharmaceutical company Jenapharm for supplying the steroids that helped make them champions in the 1970s and 1980s. During the communist era, coaches routinely gave the young athletes banned substances they said were vitamins. Some women took so many male hormones they began to look embarrassingly like men; shot-putter Heidi Krieger opted for a sex change, and now goes by Andreas. Many of the athletes now have severe health problems. Jenapharm claims that it was not responsible for the doping scandal and blames the communist regime. In a similar case, former East German swimmer Karin König is suing the German Olympic Committee.

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