WADA in possession of new intelligence from Moscow Laboratory
Today, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) advised its Executive Committee and Foundation Board that, at the end of October, WADA’s independent Intelligence and Investigations (I&I) Department acquired new intelligence concerning the former WADA-accredited Moscow Laboratory. Specifically, the I&I Department is in possession of an electronic file that the Department is confident is the Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) database of the Moscow Laboratory, i.e. all testing data between January 2012 – August 2015.
On 18 July 2016, WADA’s independent McLaren Investigation confirmed allegations of institutionalized manipulation of the doping control process before, during and after the 2014 Sochi Olympic and Paralympic Games, which were made by Dr. Grigory Rodchenkov, the former director of the Moscow Laboratory. In his Report, Professor Richard McLaren outlined how, in complete violation of WADA’s International Standard for Laboratories (ISL), the Moscow Laboratory would report all analytical positives to the Ministry of Sport; the Ministry would return with a ‘save’ or ‘quarantine’ order; if ‘save’, the Laboratory would report the sample negative in WADA’s Anti-Doping Management System (ADAMS); and, the athlete would benefit from the cover up. By cross-referencing this new intelligence with the McLaren Investigations’ findings and what was reported into ADAMS, WADA’s evidence base is reinforced.
“WADA continues to stand firmly behind the outcomes of the Agency’s independent McLaren Investigation,” said Craig Reedie, WADA President. “This new intelligence serves to reinforce our requirement of Russian authorities that they too publicly accept the outcomes; so that, we can all move forward in rebuilding public trust and confidence in Russian sport.”
At present, WADA’s I&I Department is finalizing the forensic analysis of the enormous backup file; and, assessing what information is relevant. The Department anticipates being in the position to provide more information to WADA’s Executive Committee and Foundation Board meetings to be held on 15 and 16 November respectively.
In the meantime, WADA has briefed the International Olympic Committee’s (IOC’s) Schmid and Oswald Commissions regarding the situation; and, commits to reaching out to impacted Anti-Doping Organizations regarding this new intelligence, as well as other developments related to the McLaren Investigation, in a timely fashion.
In terms of immediate next steps:
Today, WADA’s independent Compliance Review Committee (CRC) considered this new intelligence, which will shape the recommendation that it intends to make to the Agency’s Foundation Board on 16 November regarding whether or not to declare the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) compliant with the World Anti-Doping Code (Code).
WADA’s Board declared RUSADA non-compliant in November 2015, following revelations of widespread doping in Russian athletics that were exposed via WADA’s independent Pound Commission. Since then, the Agency has been working hard with RUSADA to build a robust and sustainable anti-doping program in Russia. To that end, WADA agreed a Roadmap to Code Compliance, which outlines the reinstatement criteria that RUSADA must fulfill before WADA’s CRC would recommend, to WADA’s Board, that they be declared compliant again with the Code. Most of the criteria has been fulfilled; however, the following two key criteria remain:
- That the responsible authorities for anti-doping in Russia must publically accept the reported outcomes of the McLaren Investigation.
- That the Russian Government must provide access for appropriate entities to the stored samples and electronic data in the Moscow Laboratory. These are sealed off due to a federal investigation.
As this is an ongoing investigation, WADA will not provide additional information at this time.