The International Olympic Committee (IOC) today announced sanctions against five athletes who participated in the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing for having committed anti-doping violations.
These athletes tested positive for CERA, a third generation of the endurance-enhancing hormone, EPO.
The samples were collected and tested at Games-time and were subject to further analysis earlier this year when a fully validated test to detect CERA became available. Originally, six athletes showed adverse analytical findings in their A samples. However, one athlete was not sanctioned due to the presence of CERA not being detected in her B sample.
All six athletes had the opportunity to be heard by an IOC Discipli nary Commission.
Two of the athletes sanctioned are medallists:
- Rashid Ramzi from Bahrain, gold medallist in the 1500m (athletics)
- Davide Rebellin from Italy, silver medallist in the individual road race (cycling)
In these two cases, the IOC Disciplinary Commission forwarded its recommendations to the IOC Executive Board, which took the following decisions:
Rashid Ramzi, shall be disqualified from the Athletics Men's 1500m event of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, where he was placed 1st. HeÃƒâ€šÃ‚Â shall have his medal and diploma in the above-mentioned event withdrawn.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â The International Association of Athletics Federations has been requested to modify the results of the event accordingly and to consider any further action within its own competence.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â The National Olympic Committee (NOC) of Bahrain has been ordered to return to the IOC, as soon as possible, the medal and diploma awarded to the Athlete in relation to the above-mentioned event.
Similarly Davide Rebellin, tooÃƒâ€šÃ‚Â shall be disqualified from the Men's Cycling Road event of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, where he was placed 2nd. He tooÃƒâ€šÃ‚Â shall have his medal and diploma in the above-mentioned event withdrawn and the Union Cycliste Internationale has been requested to modify the results of the event accordingly and to consider any further action within its own competence.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â The NOC of Italy has also been given identical directives as Bahrain.
In the other four cases, which did not involve medallists, the IOC Disciplinary Commission was the decision-making body and it came to the following conclusions:
- Stefan Schumacher a German Cyclist, has been disqualified from the Men's individual Time Trial event;
- Athanasia Tsoumeleka a member of the Greece Athletics team has been disqualified from the Women's 20km Walk event
- Vanja Perisic a member of the Croatian Athletics team has been disqualified from the Athletics Women's 800m event
In the case of Yudelquis Maridalin Contreras from the Dominican Republic, who placed fifth in the Women's 53kg weightlifting event, the IOC Disciplinary Commission decided thatÃƒâ€šÃ‚Â Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â on the basis of the proof currently available, no sanction shall be imposed upon Contreras.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â The IOC's right to re-open a disciplinary procedure is reserved in the event that new evidence comes to light.
As part of its zero-tolerance policy against doping, the IOC is storing samples collected during the Olympic Games for eight years. This allows the IOC to analyse samples retroactively should new fully validated tests to detect new prohibited substances/methods become available. The latest round of further analyses, which began in January, took advantage of improved technology to seek evidence of the prohibited use of CERA and insulin. Most of the work was conducted at the WADA-accredited laboratory in Lausanne, in close collaboration with the accredited laboratories in Paris and Cologne.