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Lifetime doping bans not legal, WADA president says

Craig Reedie

Newly elected World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) President Craig Reedie gestures during the 2013 World Conference on Doping in Sports in Johannesburg November 15, 2013. Briton Reedie will be the next president of WADA after his selection to the position was confirmed on Friday. Reedie, the only candidate to succeed Australian John Fahey, was elected by WADA at a board meeting after the World Conference on Doping in Sport ended on Friday. REUTERS/Stringer (SOUTH AFRICA - Tags: SPORT HEADSHOT)


The World Anti-Doping Agency doubled bans for “serious doping offenders” from two years to four years last November, to be implemented in 2015, but many would like to see lifetime bans.

WADA has looked into it, and it doesn’t appear to be an option.

“Our advice was that [life bans] would be challenged and would not be sustainable in law,” WADA president Craig Reedie told the BBC. “A four-year penalty will stand up in court and takes a person out of the cycle of an Olympic Games.”

Doping suspensions have been prevalent in track and field over the last year, with Tyson Gay, Asafa Powell and Veronica Campbell-Brown failing drug tests but having their bans shortened (or, as in Campbell-Brown’s case, cleared altogether).

Photos: Vonn, Federer play tennis in Swiss Alps

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