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Ex-President Of Russian Track And Field Federation, Other Officials Banned In Doping Case

Dmitry Shlyakhtin, the former head of the Russian Athletics Federation
Dmitry Shlyakhtin, the former head of the Russian Athletics Federation

The former head of the Russian Athletics Federation (RusAF), Dmitry Shlyakhtin, was among five officials banned on February 17 for four years after a disciplinary tribunal upheld all charges against them in a probe into high jumper Danil Lysenko.

The Monaco-based Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU), an independent doping watchdog unit of World Athletics, the sport’s governing body, said the case involved “submission of forged documents and false explanations” in a 15-month probe into why Lysenko failed to make himself available for drug testing.

The AIU said that Shlyakhtin was banned after being found guilty of charges including failing to cooperate with the inquiry, tampering with the anti-doping process, and failing to report a doping violation.

Russian officials were accused of using false medical papers to help Lysenko escape a ban for violating the rule which obliges athletes to be reachable for no-notice testing.

The AIU said former RusAF board member Artur Karamyan was also found guilty of tampering, complicity, failing to report an anti-doping rule violation, and failing to cooperate with the investigation.

The other three officials named are former executive director Aleksandr Parkin, senior administrator Elena Orlova, and anti-doping coordinator Elena Ikonnikova.

The AIU said Parkin, Orlova, and Ikonnikova did not contest the charges.

“These are important decisions for the sport of athletics. The AIU was created to be a fearless and independent organization. Our work in uncovering the conspiracy and fraudulent behavior in this case demonstrates that the AIU is fulfilling its role to make cheats accountable, irrespective of their stature or standing,” AIU Chair David Howman said in a statement.

Lysenko, a former world indoor champion and silver medalist at the 2017 world championships, and his coach were also charged in 2019 and the case against them is ongoing. RusAF, under new leadership, last year admitted to wrongdoing in the case.

Russia has already been suspended from international track and field competitions because of doping.

The Lysenko case brought RusAF to the brink of expulsion from World Athletics.

With reporting by AP and Reuters
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