U.S. Accused of Drug Cover-Up in Track and Field -- March 6, 2001
LONDON, March 6. THE world governing body for track and field, the IAAF, has formally accused the United States of covering up positive drugs tests and failing to comply with regulations, according to an article by John Goodbody and David Powell in today's London Times.
According to the article, a secret report from the
IAAF has been sent to an independent inquiry, chaired by Professor Richard McLaren, a Canadian lawyer, saying that the Americans suppressed information about 18 adverse findings before the 2000 Olympic Games.
"Controversy broke out in Sydney over the possibility
that adverse findings had been ignored by United States of America Track and Field (USATF)," write Goodbody and Powell." The US governing body denied the
allegations and set up the inquiry, consisting of McLaren, two other awyers and Micki King, the former Olympic diver." It is expected to report its findings in about a month’s time.
Goodbody and Powell write that the tests are believed to have been carried out at the University of Indiana laboratory in Indianapolis, which was accredited by the IOC until it was disbanded last year because of lack of funding.
"What has concerned the IAAF," write the British journalists, is that USATF did not inform it about the adverse findings, as any national governing body is obliged to do, even if the competitor is exonerated."
USATF reports incidents only when the appeals process is complete. When the scandal began during the Olympics, Craig Masback, the USATF chief executive, said that the rumors of the positive tests "did not involve any athlete on the US Olympic team. No one
competing here is subject to the process of any
"One person who is believed not to be involved is C.
J. Hunter, the husband of Marion Jones, winner of five Olympic medals," write Goodbody and Powell. Last year
Hunter had four adverse findings in drugs tests, two in
competition and two out of competition in Europe, but he insists that he is innocent and is fighting the case.
Powell is a British journalist who was the first to report that more than 50 Italian Olympians had tested positive for human growth hormone in tests conducted by the Italian Olympic Committee (CONI) last June, results the CONI suppressed.