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Armstrong settles $3 million lawsuit over bonuses

Discovery Channel team rider Armstrong passes the Arc de Triomphe in Paris after winning his seventh Tour de France in this July 24, 2005, f
Discovery Channel team rider Armstrong passes the Arc de Triomphe in Paris after winning his seventh Tour de France in this July 24, 2005, f

(Reuters) - Disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong has reached a settlement with an insurance company over $3 million in performance bonuses paid to him from 1999 to 2001, his spokesman said on Wednesday.

Nebraska-based Acceptance Insurance had sued Armstrong and his former team's management company after the American cyclist was handed a life ban and stripped of his record seven Tour de France titles following a U.S. Anti-Doping Agency investigation.

Armstrong confessed in an interview with Oprah Winfrey in January that he used performance-enhancing drugs to cheat his way to the Tour de France wins.

The Acceptance Insurance lawsuit, filed in Austin, Texas, said his lies had voided his policy with the insurance company.

"It has been settled," Armstrong spokesman Mark Higgins told Reuters via email without disclosing any further details.

The settlement came just one day before Armstrong, 42, was scheduled to give sworn testimony in court in the case.

Armstrong and his business partners still face a federal lawsuit over charges of defrauding the U.S. Postal Service of endorsement money through Armstrong's use of performance-enhancing drugs.

Former Armstrong team mate Floyd Landis brought the suit in 2010 under a federal law that allows whistleblowers to report fraud committed against the government in exchange for a reward.

The U.S. Justice Department joined the suit in February, seeking to recover at least some of the $40 million the Postal Service paid from 1998 to 2004 to have Armstrong and his team mates from Tailwind Sports wear its logo during cycling wins.

A federal judge said earlier this week he planned to rule in writing within 30 days on requests by Armstrong and the other defendants to dismiss the suit.

"It might get dismissed as to some defendants. I can tell you I doubt it as to all," U.S. District Judge Robert Wilkins said.

(Reporting by Mark Lamport-Stokes in Los Angeles; Editing by Gene Cherry)

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