Russian doping scandal whistleblower's attorney says WADA will lose integrity if RUSADA is not banned

WADA gave the Russians a conditional release from the ban in September but one of the requirements was full access to data at the Moscow lab but that did not happen.

Agence France-Presse December 23, 2018 10:36:33 IST
Russian doping scandal whistleblower's attorney says WADA will lose integrity if RUSADA is not banned

New York: The attorney for Russian doping scandal whistleblower Grigory Rodchenkov said Saturday that restoring Russia to World Anti-Doping Agency compliance after being denied key lab data would destroy WADA's integrity.

The move came a day after the Canada-based sport doping watchdogs announced a five-member panel would return from Moscow empty-handed after not being allowed to retrieve data from a suspended Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) laboratory. The data had been required to complete Russia's controversial September reinstatement to sports by WADA after revelations of a state-backed doping program.

Russian doping scandal whistleblowers attorney says WADA will lose integrity if RUSADA is not banned

Representational image. Reuters

"(WADA president) Craig Reedie is Nero, playing his fiddle while Russia burns clean sports to the ground," attorney Jim Walden said. "The time for half measures and appeasement must finally come to an end. If RUSADA is not now banned, the last measure of WADA's integrity will vanish."

Rodchenkov, whose testimony unveiled the elaborate Russian doping scheme for the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, is in hiding in the United States in the wake of death threats after the Russians were punished, including a ban from this year's Pyeongchang Winter Olympics.

WADA gave the Russians a conditional release from the ban in September but one of the requirements was full access to data at the Moscow lab and that did not happen this week as a WADA team had expected because, in the words of a WADA statement, "an issue raised by the Russian authorities that the team's equipment to be used for the data extraction was required to be certified under Russian law."

The data could exonerate Russia or incriminate the Moscow lab and Russian doping program as well as corroborating Rodchenkov's testimony.

WADA officials have said they want to review the data and Russians retest any samples WADA wishes by 30 June 2019 as part of the reinstatement deal.

Walden also commented on a new bill introduced Friday by US lawmakers that would criminalize international sports doping conspiracies that impact major international competitions.

The bill was named for Rodchenkov, the former Moscow lab director.

Penalties will include fines of up to $1 million or imprisonment of up to 10 years, depending on the violation.

It also provides for restitution to victims of such conspiracies and for protection of whistleblowers from retaliation.

Updated Date:

also read

World Anti-Doping Agency says it will rule next month on alleged Russian cover-up of doping data, IOC against blanket ban
Sports

World Anti-Doping Agency says it will rule next month on alleged Russian cover-up of doping data, IOC against blanket ban

The World Anti-Doping Agency says it expects to rule next month on whether Russia manipulated its drug-testing data.

Russian anti-doping agency on verge of suspension after WADA inspection team denied access to Moscow lab data
Sports

Russian anti-doping agency on verge of suspension after WADA inspection team denied access to Moscow lab data

The five-member WADA team left the Moscow lab frustrated and without having retrieved any of the data in Laboratory Information Management System it had been promised access to.

Swimmer Michael Phelps slams WADA for lifting ban from Russia's anti-drugs body, calls for leadership change to counter doping
Sports

Swimmer Michael Phelps slams WADA for lifting ban from Russia's anti-drugs body, calls for leadership change to counter doping

Olympic legend Michael Phelps called for new leadership in the fight against drugs in sport on Friday after the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) controversially reinstated Russia's tainted anti-drugs body.