11th April 2018

Transparency International Slovenia call for action after doping arrests

Transparency International (TI) Slovenia has called for the government to take action against unethical practices in sport, particularly against doping and match-fixing. TI Slovenia ‘urged the Ministry of Education, Science and Sport to develop an action plan to ensure integrity of sport in consultation with the public’, it said in a statement. It also urged the government to ‘adopt the National Sports Programme 2014-2023’, which is understood to contain sports integrity measures, as well as offering ‘clear and measurable objectives that will allow it to monitor and assess progress in this area’.

TI Slovenia outlined that its statement was promoted by recent instances of doping that involved a four year sanction issued to distance runner Domen Hafner, as well as the arrest of two people on suspicion of theft and resale of doping substances. It added that a Transparency International survey conducted between December and January involving the football clubs of Slovenia’s first division had found that it was considered to be at high risk of match-fixing.

One of those detained by police on doping charges is Boris Špes, an employee of the UKC Maribor hospital, reports Večer newspaper, however this has not been confirmed by the hospital or the police. The other is Igor Šalamun, a coach with AD Štajerska, the athletics club confirmed in a statement, which added that Šalamun only coached a group of 30 recreational athletes that included Špes.

Maribor police have confirmed that a 36 and 52 year old were charged with 21 criminal offences involving the illicit production and trafficking of illicit drugs and doping substances. In a statement, police said that they had seized darbepoetin, the re-engineered form of erythropoietin (EPO) that Hafner was sanctioned for using.

Police said they had also recovered Aranesp 500, which contains darbepoetin, as well as dexamethasone. As well as the above substances, all of which feature on the 2018 Prohibited List published by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), it seized quantities of diazepam, morphine, and Helex, which contains alprazolam – all of which are regulated drugs in Slovenia.

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