Papa Diack and co-conspirators fail with appeal against life bans from athletics
The Court of Arbitration for Sport in Lausanne today rejected appeals by three leading figures that received life bans in the IAAF Russian athletics doping scandal, including Papa Massata Diack, the son of Lamine Diack, the former president of athletics’ world governing body.
In January 2016, Diack, Valentin Balakhnichev (pictured), the former IAAF treasurer and former president of RUSAF, the Russian athletics federation, and Russian coach Alexei Melnikov received life bans from an IAAF panel having been found guilty of suppressing anti-doping violations and of extortion of money from Lilya Shobukhova, the Russian marathon runner.
In a statement today, CAS said that the decision “is confirmed” and that the trio “remain banned for life from any involvement in the sport of athletics,” adding that the charges had been “established beyond reasonable doubt.”
None of the three attended the hearing, where they were represented by their legal counsels. Diack junior, the former IAAF marketing consultant who is wanted for questioning in relation to the scandal by French authorities and is the subject of an international arrest warrant, is thought to be in his native Senegal.
RUSAF was suspended by the IAAF in 2015 amid allegations of state-supported doping in the country, and almost its entire track and field team was excluded from the Olympic Games in Rio last August.
The IAAF welcomed today’s ruling, with Sebastian Coe, the federation's president, saying: “Today’s ruling sends a clear message that anyone who attempts to corrupt our sport will be brought to justice.”Sportcal