Europe

Prosecutor: Eddy Merckx to be charged in corruption case

  • FILE - A July 26, 1970 photo from files of Belgium's Eddy Merckx cycling in the 1970 Tour de France. Eddy Merckx, considered by many the greatest cyclist of all time, will be officially charged Wednesday, June 1, 2016, in a corruption case linked to irregular purchases of equipment by Brussels-area police and municipalities, a Brussels prosecutor said. (AP Photo)

    FILE - A July 26, 1970 photo from files of Belgium's Eddy Merckx cycling in the 1970 Tour de France. Eddy Merckx, considered by many the greatest cyclist of all time, will be officially charged Wednesday, June 1, 2016, in a corruption case linked to irregular purchases of equipment by Brussels-area police and municipalities, a Brussels prosecutor said. (AP Photo)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this Sunday, July 4, 2010 file photo, former cyclist and Tour de France winner Eddy Merckx of Belgium greets the crowd after the first stage of the Tour de France in Rotterdam, Netherlands. Five-time Tour de France winner Eddy Merckx will go to court Wednesday, June 1, 2016, charged in a corruption case linked to irregular purchases of equipment by Brussels-area police. (AP Photo/Bas Czerwinski, File)

    FILE - In this Sunday, July 4, 2010 file photo, former cyclist and Tour de France winner Eddy Merckx of Belgium greets the crowd after the first stage of the Tour de France in Rotterdam, Netherlands. Five-time Tour de France winner Eddy Merckx will go to court Wednesday, June 1, 2016, charged in a corruption case linked to irregular purchases of equipment by Brussels-area police. (AP Photo/Bas Czerwinski, File)  (The Associated Press)

Five-time Tour de France winner Eddy Merckx, considered by many the greatest cyclist of all time, will be charged Wednesday in a Belgian corruption case linked to irregular purchases of equipment by Brussels-area police and municipalities, a Brussels prosecutor said.

The prosecutor, who spoke Tuesday on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to make public statements, said Merckx is accused of corruption and the use of false documents in the sale of 46 bicycles by his company Cycles Eddy Merckx to police in southern Brussels in 2006-07.

The contract, worth an estimated 15,000 euros ($16,700), was allegedly obtained after a policeman furnished Merckx with inside information. Merckx allegedly repaid the officer by selling him a bicycle at a low price and giving a bicycle to the man's wife.