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Norway ski star lied to police after crash

Norwegian cross-country skiing star Petter Northug, a two-time Olympic champion in 2010, has admitted to lying to police when they first contacted him about crashing his car drunk on Sunday morning.

Norway ski star lied to police after crash
Petter Northug at a press conference during the Winter Olympics in Sochi in February. Photo: Heiko Junge/NTB scanpix
In a meeting with journalists on Monday evening, confessed that that he had told police only that he had been in the car, and claimed that he had not been the driver. 
 
"Initially, when I woke up, I was a bit unclear and did not give the correct information," the 28-year-old told VG newspaper. "I said I was in the car, but I assume that in the condition I was in, I did not remember what happened," he said. 
 
Police on Monday confirmed that Northug is under investigation after causing an accident and admitting to drunk driving.  Police in Trondheim, the western city where the incident took place, said they were waiting for the alcohol level test results "in the next 14 days" before they make a decision on any charges against the "enfant terrible" of Norwegian cross-country skiing.

   
"The police confirms that Petter Northug is being investigated for a violation of traffic regulations," officer Monica Groette Estenstad said during a press conference. "This case will be treated like any other of the same kind."
   
In the early hours of Sunday, Northug's black Audi A7 was found crashed into a road barrier after crossing a roundabout and knocking down several traffic signs.
   
Potentially aggravating factors are that the driver — who has proven to be the sportsman himself — fled the scene, leaving behind him a slightly injured passenger, and that the evidence on site point at a speed above the 40 km/h (25 mph) limit.
   
After being arrested at home and interrogated by the police, the 28-year-old skier issued a statement in the evening offering his "deep apologies" and saying he was "ready to accept the punishment for (his) actions".
   
"It's the alcohol level that determines the sentence," Estenstad said.
   
The legal limit in Norway is 0.2 gram per liter of blood, and a result above one gram is usually punished with imprisonment without remission.
   
Norwegian media speculated about the skier's future career in light of the incident. Northug holds four Olympic medals — two gold — but has been out of shape since last year and did not make the podium at the Sochi Olympics in February.

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COCAINE

Norway ski star admits drug problems after cocaine bust

Following a speeding offence which led to a house search that found cocaine, former Norwegian cross-country ski star Petter Northug, said on Friday he had a "serious problem" with alcohol and drugs.

Norway ski star admits drug problems after cocaine bust
Petter Northug admits 'serious problems' at a press conference on Friday. Photo: Terje Pedersen / NTB Scanpix / AFP
Police clocked Northug at 168 kilometres per hour (105mph) at the wheel of his Jaguar near Oslo on August 13.
   
Suspecting that he was driving under the influence – the tests have not yet been processed – police searched Northug's home and found the cocaine.   
 
“I have a serious problem with alcohol, drugs and medication in connection with, at times, big parties and there have been a lot of parties,” the 34-year-old told a press conference. 
 
   
Apologising “to all concerned”, he said he was “ready to accept the sentence”, after he is tried.
   
In 2014, Northug was jailed for 50 days, a sentence mostly served with an electronic bracelet, fined and banned from driving for five years, after crashing while driving under the influence.
   
On Friday, he said the alcohol and drug problems began after his retirement from sport in 2018. He said he has sought professional help.
   
Among the best cross-country skiers in history, Northug won four Olympic medals, all in 2010 and including two golds. He collected 13 World Championship golds between 2007 and 2015 and won three World Cup globes, including two as overall champion.
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