Fremantle Dockers sponsor fined for 'unlawful' importation of supplements

Yahoo!7 February 8, 2013, 9:57 am

Fremantle Football Club are at the centre of a supplements scandal just a day after a damning report into organised crime and drugs in sport was released by the Australian Crime Commission.

Nutritional supplements supplied to the AFL club by Export Corporation (Australia) Pty Ltd between 2008 and 2009 were found to be “unregistered substances”, reports Fairfax Media.

In Federal Court proceedings Export Corporation was found guilty of 35 acts of unlawful importation of products between 2007 and 2008.

Though Nutrition Systems was the business contracted for 2008-2011 by the Dockers to supply the supplements, the parent company Export Corporation copped the $3.1 million fine.

Fremantle was sponsored by Nutrition Systems from 2008 to 2009. It is understood that in 2009 their association with the company ended.

Substances supplied to the club were not permitted on the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods, the court found.

The supplements provided could promote muscle growth, result in fat reduction and enhance sexual performance, but alarmingly some items had ingredients that were not labelled on the product, or were only meant to be administered with a prescription. Such a breach in standards was a serious matter according to the Department of Health and Ageing, who told Fairfax Media that there could be harmful side effects as a result.

Fremantle were not believed to have used the supplements "extensively" from 2008 to 2009.

"Export Corporation now agrees that its response to those matters was inadequate and based upon a mistaken belief that the TGA's concerns could be addressed by taking certain steps which it now accepts were not sufficient," Justice Perram stated in court.

The judge declared the importation of the products was probably the result of "error in systems control".

The embarrassing case comes in the wake of a momentous day in Australian sport, with the ACC unveiling a report claiming “widespread” use of banned substances involving organized crime, involving a number of sporting codes.

MP Jason Clare described the findings as not just cheating, but “cheating with the help of criminals”.

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  1. Jeffrey12:27pm Saturday 09th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    interesting how 'team GB' made of 4 countries pretends to be so prolific....wonder how Scots and Irish and Welsh feel about being conscripted into the 'team' ?? At least Aus competes as one country.....not as a conscripted group include multiple Jamaicans

  2. James Sharrett12:21pm Saturday 09th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    To team gb, are you white englishman? And do you work or do you bludge of the welfare, and wont work?

  3. Big01:39am Saturday 09th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    To be fair, Essendon should be banned for several seasons even prior to any investigation or findings. Natural justice requires that filthy, cheating scum need to go regardless of the consequences. Stop clutching at straws and stop trying to justify what they did. Letting them get away with it is like saying that law enforcement is too difficult so we'll just let everyone do what they like. How will you feel when yours is the first house broken into and little Johnnie's playstation is taken? Hmmmm? It's time for pitchforks and witch hunts.

  4. Tony06:08pm Friday 08th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    I don't blame the clubs or the players - Competition is so fierce nowadays that every one is looking for the Edge...... The X factor - to seperate them from the rest......... this has been going on for many many years. Since it became professional........... The AFL and the players association are to blame....- They did nothing to combat the cheating - the supplements - the drugs - the criminal infiltration - the 3 strikes your out was a protection racket - now its blown up into their faces and they want to murder Essendon - they will have to murder many more clubs by the time they are finished and if they do - they themselves will be finished...........

  5. Chris05:01pm Friday 08th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    Sorry James I disagree, all clubs should have anything that they are giving a player tested so they know exactly what's in them. After all isn't that their duty of care???

    1 Reply
  6. Lorraine03:57pm Friday 08th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    Team GB do us all a favour go home sick of people like you come here run us down go home you make me sick along ever one else oh and buy the way who cares how many dam medal GB won

  7. Jonathan03:32pm Friday 08th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    Centrum! James, Sports don't need Supplements. What ever happen to Natural Ability? I think you support Supplements in Sports. We don't need it,the strength of yourself is good enough for any contest. Do we needed Supplements? If you are High Profile Player(s) in 'ANY' given Sports Code, then NO!!! Let's not draw straws here, Centrum is just a Multi Vitamins&Minerals with a Fancy Name tagged to it! Pushing Supplements is no better than,a Drug Peddler pushing Drugs on the Street.

    1 Reply
  8. James02:38pm Friday 08th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    Jonothan, So you're saying a player who takes something like 'Centrum' a well known and trusted brand of supplement. Later finds out that the company that makes it listed the ingredients wrong when they listed it with the Australian Register of Theapudic Goods - should be banned? The only way the Docker's could have avoided this would be to have each tablet individually tested by a third party pharmacutical company and that's hardy a realistic scenario. Do you personally do that? I agree though that it is disconcerting that the companies we trust may not be entirely honest about what they are selling. What do you do when you can't trust what is supposed to be a reputable brand?

  9. alienconcepts02:37pm Friday 08th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    journos, using the term scientist for people who have never been near a university .... you may get sued by the association of scientists and engineers ! but we can't rely on journos for accuracy, they perpetuate each others myths and that of their owners .... even losing faith in ABC !

  10. Jonathan02:20pm Friday 08th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    Well that's what happens when being a high profile player(s) in any given Sport Code. Those found with Drugs in their System should recieve the full penalty and Disqualification from the Sport in Question. Just goes to show Australian Sport is not Clean after all. The Companies&Organised Crimes are no better than,an ordinary Drug Trafficker.