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Federal steroid trafficking trial opens for ex-Steelers doctor

The federal government said today that it will prove over the next few months that former Pittsburgh Steelers doctor Richard Rydze illegally prescribed steroids, improperly prescribed human growth hormone to patients and stole another Steelers doctor's registration so he could write painkiller prescriptions in the name of his dead father and his brother in Iowa.

His lawyer disputed some of the Justice Department's claims but focused largely on intent, essentially saying Mr. Rydze was not able to form intent to commit crimes because he is addicted to Vicodin, which he used to self-treat a diabetic foot wound.