Make doping a crime in Russia, says leading official


Published February 19, 2016 4:45PM (EST)

MOSCOW (AP) — Russian athletes who use banned substances in the future should face criminal charges, the Russian Olympic official in charge of resolving the country's doping crisis said Friday.

Gennady Alyoshin, the point man in talks between the Russian Olympic Committee and the IAAF over readmitting Russia's banned track and field athletes, told a Russian parliamentary committee that making dopers criminally liable under Russian law was inevitable.

"It's clear that now we have to implement criminal responsibility and that you can't cope without that," the state-run Tass news agency quoted Alyoshin as saying.

Alyoshin also called for doped athletes to be publicly shamed with the creation of a list of all who have been handed doping bans.

Russia was banned from global track and field in November and its national anti-doping agency forced to halt testing. That followed a World Anti-Doping Agency commission report alleging widespread, state-sponsored doping and cover-ups in Russia.

Alyoshin suggested that Russia bore full responsibility for its doping crisis, but also claimed the international condemnation had been politically motivated.

"We were heading for this trouble for a long time, very persistently and emphatically. We were told and warned, but we persisted in heading towards it," he said. "And when a political crisis happened, it was used against us in a moment."



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