UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) has announced two Rugby Union players have been suspended from all sport following an Anti-Doping Rule Violation.

Dan Lancaster, a rugby union player from Lincolnshire, was suspended from all sport for four years following an Anti-Doping Rule Violation for attempted use of anabolic steroids. This case dates back to April 2015 when 300 ampoules of “Testapron Testosterone Propionate” that is a commercial name for anabolic steroids were seized at the UK border. The package was addressed to Dan Lancaster, who at that time was registered at Cleethorpes RFC.

Lancaster was interviewed on May 7, 2015 by UK Anti-Doping and was charged by the Rugby Football Union (RFU) with having committed an Anti-Doping Rule Violation for “Use or Attempted Use of a Prohibited Substance” pursuant to World Rugby Regulation 21.2.2 on June 5, 2015. The case of Dan Lancaster was heard by a panel convened by the Rugby Football Union and it was determined that the rugby union player was guilty of the Anti-Doping Rule Violation. The RFU-convened panel imposed a period of ineligibility of three years and six months as a result of his prompt admission. The reduction in ban applied by the RFU panel was appealed by UK Anti-Doping and it was upheld by an RFU Appeal Panel and the ban on Lancaster was increased to four years. He is banned from all sport from 5 June 2015 to midnight on 4 June 2019.

UKAD Director of Operations, Pat Myhill remarked the Lancaster case highlights how important our work with law enforcement partners has become. Through our close working relationships with UK Borders and local police forces, we are able to deter and prevent doping through the interception of packages, stemming the supply of prohibited substances into the United Kingdom. Myhill also commented that the ease of access to substances through the internet is a major concern for UKAD. All too often we see sports people, and members of the public, purchasing substances online with no idea of what the substances contain and also added that he would encourage anyone who has information about the purchase or supply of illicit substances to contact us in confidence via Reportdoping.com.

In another development, Luke Willmott was suspended from all sport for two years following an Anti-Doping Rule Violation for Attempted Trafficking of Human Growth Hormone (HGH). The case dates back to June 2013, when 180 vials of “Jintoprin”, which is a commercial name for HGH, were seized at the border. This package was addressed to Luke Wilmott, who at the time was Captain of Derby RFC. A RFU-convened panel determined that Willmott was guilty of the Anti-Doping Rule Violation and imposed a period of Ineligibility of five years but his ban was reduced on the appeal of Willmott to two years due to the admissions he made in evidence. UKAD Director of Operations, Pat Myhill said a crucial aspect of this case is that the end user thought they were buying Human Growth Hormone (HGH) but it was determined after analysis by the Drug Control Centre, King’s College London that the substance was not HGH.

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