24th October 2019

Sports Integrity Briefs – 24 October 2019

• Former national ski team coach Mati Alaver has been charged with a criminal offence regarding doping four athletes between 2016 and 2019, the Estonian State Prosecutor’s Office announced. The Office began investigations in March, after Estonian skiers Karel Tammjärv, Andreas Veerpalu, and Algo Kärp were implicated in Operation Aderlass, a blood doping investigation into the customers of Dr. Mark Schmidt.

• Two weightlifters have been provisionally suspended after being charged with use or attempted use of a prohibited substance or method, the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) announced. Zagora Callender of Barbados has been provisionally suspended, as has Saidmukhtor Saidakhrorov of Uzbekistan. Callender finished twelfth in the 59kg category at the 2019 World Youth Championships in March. She was the only athlete from the island nation to take part in the event. Saidakhrorov won Silver in the +94kg category at the 2018 Asian Youth Weightlifting Championships. 

• The Emirates Cricket Board (ECB) has confirmed that four players that fall under its jurisdiction are being investigated by the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) Anti-Corruption Unit (ACU). ‘Emirates Cricket Board acknowledge the ICC Anti-Corruption Unit investigation involving three of its players’, read a 16 October statement. This followed the ICC’s announcement that it was investigating four alleged breaches of the ICC Anti-Corruption Code by Mohammed Naveed; six alleged breaches by Qadeer Ahmed Khan; and two breaches by Shaiman Anwar Butt. On 21 October, the ECB announced that it had provisionally suspended a fourth player, Ashfaq Ahmed. 

• American footballer Martin Winkler has been sanctioned with a four year ban, the Austrian Anti-Doping Law Commission (ÖADR) has announced (click here to download decision). Winkler was provisionally suspended in July, after returning an Adverse Analytical Finding (AAF) for 1,3-Dimethylbutylamine, and octodrine/heptaminol on 22 April. The full decision reveals the dehydrochloromethyltestosterone was also found in his sample. His ban will expire on 20 June 2023.

• Former Adelaide United player Ken Ilsø Larsen has been sanctioned with a two year ban after returning an adverse analytical finding (AAF) for a metabolite of cocaine, the Football Federation of Australia (FFA) has announced. “It wasn’t a calculated decision to make me a better football player”, Larsen told Spillerforeningen, the Danish Football Players Association, adding that he will retire from the game. “On the contrary, it was a lousy decision I made in a vulnerable moment. In Australia, the loneliness became too overwhelming, and in an attempt to escape reality for a moment, I made a lousy decision. I regret it, but I also stand by my action and will live with the consequences.”

• Boxer Eric Molina has been sanctioned with an additional one month ban for sparring with Joseph Parker in the US in preparation for Parker’s 28 July 2018 fight against Dillian Whyte. Molina was originally sanctioned with a two year ban from 28 October 2017, after returning an adverse analytical finding (AAF) for dexamethasone. The Full Decision reveals that Molina ‘was not specifically warned that sparring with or assisting other Athletes subject to the ADR [Anti-Doping Rules] would be a breach of his period of Ineligibility’; and his ‘understanding was that his period of Ineligibility applied only in the UK’ and not in the US, where the sparring sessions took place. 

• The US House of Representatives has passed H.R.835, commonly known as the ‘Rodchenkov Act’. The Act seeks to impose criminal sanctions on people involved in international doping fraud conspiracies; to provide restitution for victims of such conspiracies; and to require sharing of information with the US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA). The Act must also be passed by the US Senate before being passed to US President Donald Trump, who must sign it before it comes into effect. Click here for the full text of the Act. 

• A Swiss court has asked Austrian authorities for a report into whether Franz Beckenbauer is fit to stand trial on charges of corruption related to his role in Germany’s successful bid to host the 2006 FIFA World Cup, reports AFP. In August, the Swiss Office of the Attorney General (OAG) filed charges against four football officials in relation to corruption, however said it would pursue its case against Beckenbauer separately, because of ill health.

• Former South African cricketer Gulam Bodi is to appeal a five year jail sentence for his role in directing match-fixing, reports Sport24. Bodi pleaded guilty to several charges of match-fixing in November last year, after criminal charges were levied against him in July. Bodi was sanctioned with a 20 year ban by Cricket South Africa (CSA) in January 2016. He admitted to several charges of fixing matches during the 2015 Ram Slam Twenty20 tournament. Six other players – Alviro Petersen, Thami Tsolekile, Lonwabo Tsotsobe, Jean Symes, Pumi Matshikwe and Ethy Mbhalati – were also sanctioned by CSA (media statements here, here, and here) for their involvement.

• The Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) is seeking a partner to conduct a feasibility study examining how football’s ability to investigate and prosecute match-fixing cases can be enhanced. ‘UEFA wishes to select one or several company(ies) for the provision of commissioning external research to be conducted with the objective to evaluate whether international cooperation between football bodies, state authorities, and other stakeholders can be better structured, resourced, and more independent in a more effective way’, reads the Tender Document.

• The South American football confederation (CONMEBOL) has suspended the Futsal Copa América, which was due to take place in Los Ángeles, Chile, from 23 to 30 October. ‘The city is within the declared state of emergency’, read a statement, adding that the event will be rescheduled at a later date.

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