Jury Picks Begin For Ex-Steelers Doctor's Fed Drug Trial

Jan 10, 2017

Fans enter Heinz Field before the preseason football game between the Arizona Cardinals and Pittsburgh Steelers in Pittsburgh, Thursday, Aug. 13, 2009.
Credit Keith Srakocic / AP

Jury selection has begun for a former Pittsburgh Steelers doctor charged with illegally trafficking in human growth hormones and steroids since shortly after the team cut him from their medical staff in 2007 after more than two decades.

Sixty-six-year-old Richard Rydze is also charged with illegally distributing painkillers since 2005, but none of his alleged crimes have been linked to his service with the team. State records show his medical license expired in 2012, a couple months after he was indicted by a federal grand jury in Pittsburgh.

Jury selection began Tuesday in a trial expected to last several months.

The trial is in Pittsburgh, but is being prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney's Office in Cleveland because Rydze once contracted to provide medical exams for FBI agents in Pittsburgh.