Media release

Alexander LEGKOV and Evgeniy BELOV, RUS CC,.

Regarding the provisional suspension of Russian participants at the Winter Olympics in Sochi, 2014.provisional suspension Russian participants in the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics.

Bochum | Moscow 27 December 2016

The International Olympic Committee IOC briefed on the 22.12.2016 the International Ski Federation FIS, that it claimed in connection with violations of anti-doping rules investigations has initiated at the Olympic Winter Games 2014 in Sochi. The investigation among other things refer to samples that are associated with the two athletes. The FIS doping Panel suspended affiliated with writing the 22.12.2016 the two athletes the enlightenment of the question whether they are guilty of a doping offence, or not. The writing does not rise to a specific accusation of doping.

The measure is related to the results of the so-called McLaren report that has been published in two parts on July 18, 2016 and December 9, 2016.In these reports different methods are described by which doping samples of athletes in the WADA accredited Doping Control Laboratories in Moscow and Sochi would have been opened and resealed without leaving visible marks to be recognized by the untrained eye. The report distinguishes between samples of three groups. That have been affected in Sochi of which two provide indications that the urine samples have been manipulated or not submitted by an athlete who is identified as a donor of the sample by the Doping Control Form. In the third group, which also includes Alexander LEGKOV and Evgeniy BELOV, the urine samples show no abnormalities.Alexander LEGKOV and Evgeniy BELOV belong, exhibit no abnormalities to the urine samples himself.

The assumption that the sample bottles have been opened provides no conclusive indication that the samples could have been positive. Following the assumption of the McLaren report, amongst others, the samples by athletes whose names are on the designated “Duchess” list, which shows athletes who are accused of having received performance-enhancing substances, have been opened and replaced. The evidence indicates that the names of Alexander LEGKOV and Evgeniy BELOV are not included in the “Duchess” list. After further assumptions of the McLaren report, in addition to the samples of athletes on the “Duchess” list. Samples of all Russian champions or possible future champions on a “Sochi Medal by Day List” have been replaced. Without the responsible person knowing whether the allegedly interchanged sample could have been positive or not. This group obviously includes Alexander LEGKOV and Evgeniy BELOV.

Following the adoption by McLaren include samples of such athletes should be been opened and exchanged, that names are on the list labeled “Duchess” with athletes who should have received performance-enhancing substances under Government control. According to the recent findings, the names are Alexander LEGKOV and Evgeniy BELOV not on this list of “Duchess”.

After the further adoption of McLaren the samples of all the Russian medal winners or future hopes of medals should be been replaced in addition to the samples of athletes ‘Duchess’ list after a “Sochi medal by Day list”, without that person who should have the opening of the samples, was well known, whether the allegedly wrong sample could be positive or not. To this group belong quite obviously Alexander LEGKOV and Evgeniy BELOV.

We emphasize in particular that, according to the current state of knowledge, investigations against Alexander LEGKOV and Evgeniy BELOV are solely initiated because of alleged scratches on the sample bottles. which indicate that someone was tempering with the bottles. There is neither a positive sample of each of the two athletes. Nor any kind of indication that they had consumed prohibited substances or that the samples could have been tested positive without opening them. The McLaren Report does not provide such connection. In fact, blood samples were taken from both athletes in Sochi as well, which turned out negative. McLaren has no information regarding an exchange of blood samples. This is a definite indication that both athletes were not drugged at the time of the Olympic Games.Alexander LEGKOV Evgeniy BELOV, and only determinations were initiated because the sample bottles supposedly traces are in, which refer to their opening. There is a positive test, nor any other indications that they may have taken banned substances, or that samples without an opening had to be tested positive by both athletes. Not establishes such a link also the McLaren report. Actually, two athletes in Sochi were taken from blood samples tested negative. McLaren are no findings about an exchange of blood samples. This is a strong indication that both athletes at the time of the Olympic Games were not doped.

Alexander LEGKOV bAlexander LEGKOV has constantly shown excellent performances. He has positioned himself amongst the world elite of cross-country skiing, particularly with regard to the two seasons before the Olympic Winter Games of 2014. At the actual games, he  won a gold medal and a silver medal. Evgeniy BELOV continuously has improved his performances since his debut at the Junior World Championships in 2010.The performance of both athletes are the result of hard training and great discipline. The development of excellent performance, the multitude of completed doping controls in other European countries which have been tested negative and the variety of the present medical reports at hand do not indicate the use of performance-enhancing substances. Alexander LEGKOV and Evgeniy BELOV have not used prohibited substances or applied forbidden methods and have at no time submitted samples outside of arranged doping tests and have never been prompted for this purpose. Furthermore, they have not taken any pictures of their sample bottles in Sochi, as described in the McLaren Report.

Alexander LEGKOV and Evgeniy BELOV have never used prohibited means or prohibited methods applied at any time outside of arranged doping samples inspection or investigation is required and supply are also never been prompted. They have made also no photos of your sample bottles in Sochi, as described in the report of the McLaren.

They profess the prohibition of doping and all types of combating doping, because they are proud of their hard-won achievements and want it to stay that way. The fight against doping is important. This implies the protection of the regularity of doping controls and the allegations contained in the McLaren Report being elucidated. McLaren states explicitly that his report is not part of the Result Management of WADA and that the conviction of individual athletes is not his duty. He literally expresses : “It is unknown whether athletes have knowingly or unknowingly participated in the system”.

The fight against doping is important. This includes that the regularity of the doping is protected controls and that the allegations of the McLaren reports to enlighten. McLaren itself explicitly states that report management of WADA and it not be part of the result is not his task to translate individual athletes. He literally runs

“It is unknown whether athletes knowingly or unknowingly have is participating in the system”.

However, the application of sanctions against affected athletes according to the Anti-Doping Code requires, also regarding the application of the strict liability principle, an assumed or verified fault accusation against the athlete. Referred to Alexander LEGKOV and Evgeniy BELOV, this has not happened to date. The sole assumption that their sample bottles have been opened and resealed by unknown persons beyond their responsibility and knowledge is not sufficient for that.Alexander LEGKOV Evgeniy BELOV, and so far not the case. Presumption that their sample bottles should be been outside your responsibility and without their knowledge by yet unknown persons opened and closed again, alone, is not enough for this.

Alexander LEGKOVAlexander LEGKOV and Evgeniy BELOV are represented by the lawyer Christof Wieschemann, WIESCHEMANN lawyers from Bochum, who will seek the annulment of the Provisional Suspension before the start of the Tour de Ski.

WIESCHEMANN attorneys at law

Harpener Hellweg 89

44805 Bochum

FON +49 234 239330

FAX + 49234 2393320


Leave a Reply