Russia officials banned in doping cover-up

·1-min read

The former head of Russia's track and field federation is among five officials who have been banned for obstructing an anti-doping investigation into a world champion.

The Athletics Integrity Unit said the case involved "submission of forged documents and false explanations" in a 15-month probe into why high jumper Danil Lysenko wasn't available for drug testing.

Russian officials were accused of using fake medical documents to help Lysenko escape a ban for breaking the whereabouts rules which oblige athletes to be reachable for no-notice testing.

Former federation president Dmitry Shlyakhtin was banned for four years after being found guilty of charges including failing to cooperate with the investigation, tampering with the anti-doping process and failing to report a doping violation, the AIU said.

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.

The federation, under new leadership, admitted wrongdoing in the case last year.

The case brought Russia, already suspended from international track and field over doping, to the brink of expulsion from governing body World Athletics when the charges were filed shortly after the 2019 world championships.

It led to a lengthy freeze in talks aimed at reforming the sport in Russia to allow the federation to be reinstated before the Olympics in Tokyo.