Australia Doping

February 7, 2013 by  

Australia Doping, Widespread doping and illegal drug use among Australian athletes has been alleged in a bombshell report by the country’s Crime Commission (ACC).

The use of performance-enhancing drugs – in some cases facilitated by organised crime – was unearthed in a landmark, year-long investigation. In what’s been described as a major blow to professional sport’s integrity in Australia, the ACC found that the use of banned drugs had been “orchestrated and condoned” by coaches, sports scientists and support staff across multiple sporting codes.

The ACC found that crime groups were involved in the distribution of banned drugs including hormones and growth-hormone releasing substances called peptides.

“The findings are shocking and will disgust Australian sports fans,” said Jason Clare, the national minister for home affairs and justice .

“It’s cheating but it’s worse than that. It’s cheating with the help of criminals. We’re talking about multiple athletes across multiple codes,” he said

The ACC said crime groups had taken advantage of legal loopholes making it possible to supply substances that breach anti-doping rules. It said professional sport in Australia was “highly vulnerable” to infiltration by such groups.

“This is particularly serious. Links between organised crime and players exposes players to the risk of being co-opted for match-fixing,” Clare said.

One potential case of match-fixing was identified by the ACC but it did not release details, citing legal reasons.

Clare said in some cases sports scientists had orchestrated the doping of entire teams. He said players were administered with drugs not yet approved for human use.

The Australian Sports Anti-doping Authority, Asada, has begun investigations into specific cases. When the story broke it declined to name individuals or clubs involved for legal reasons.

The former head of the Asada, Richard Ings, said it was a wake-up call for Australian sport. “This is not a black day in Australian sport, this is the blackest day in Australian sport” he told ABC TV.

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