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Archive for  December 2008

Wednesday 31, Dec 2008

Two more dopers caught before 2008 ends

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urine-test-steroidsSports organizations net two athletes for violation of anti-doping policies.
Soccer player Eduardo Carlos Morgado Oliveira tested positive for the anabolic steroid nandrolone after the Russia-Italy matchup at the FIFA Futbal World Cup Brazil 2008 on Oct.18.

Meanwhile Liberian player Melvin King received a five-month ban subsequent to a positive test at a doping control after the match of the preliminary competition of the 2010 FIFA World Cup between Senegal and Liberia. The match took place on 21 June 2008. King was discovered of using a glucocorticoid, which is a medication included in the list of specified substances of WADA.

The use of such a substance requires a therapeutic use exemption, something which the player did not have. The sanctions for such an anti-doping rule violation range from a warning to a two-year suspension, and the FIFA Disciplinary Committee decided to impose a sanction of five months starting on 2 October 2008, the date on which the player was first provisionally suspended by the chairman of the FIFA Disciplinary Committee. The sanction applies for all matches, whether friendly or official fixtures, at domestic and international level.

Wednesday 31, Dec 2008

Usain Bolt: Center of Accolades and Doping Suspicions of 2008

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usain-bolt-steroidsBolt’s impressive performance on the track in Beijing had not only yielded accolades but scrutiny as well.

BALCO founder Victor Conte voiced out his concern in connection with athletes like Bolt who hail from Caribbean countries. Most of these countries lack independent anti-doping agencies to check the cleanliness of these athletes according to confessed and jailed steroid supplier Conte.

American sprint star Carl Lewis similarly expressed his disbelief of Bolt’s performance with this statement: “I’m still working with the fact he dropped from 10-flat to 9.6 in one year,” American Lewis was quoted as saying. “I think there are some issues … countries like Jamaica do not have a random (dope control) program so they can go months without being tested.”

Bolt, in response, said: “I know I’m clean. I work hard for what I want,”

“I know what he said. To me it doesn’t really matter what he said, a lot of people were saying that.

“Carl Lewis can say whatever he wants. That’s just his opinion,” Lewis said

Tuesday 30, Dec 2008

Shane Mosley rode a limo to get his supply of steroids, EPO

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mosley-steroidsIn what may be a prelude to their meeting in court, Victor Conte and Shane Mosley traded accusations in connection with the boxer’s defamation suit.

Mosley had filed the suit in a New York state court against the founder of the California-based supplement company known as BALCO (Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative). This is Mosley’s move to refute Conte’s allegations that he watched the boxer injected himself with performance-enhancing drugs and that Mosley knew what he was taking.

Mosley admitted that he had used performance-enhancing drugs but he continually insists that he didn’t know then that what he was taking were anabolic steroids.

Conte’s lawyer filed a motion to dismiss Mosley’s suit and among the documents he filed was an affidavit that detailed the drugs and payments made by Mosley before he defeated Oscar De La Hoya in September 2003.

“I believe it is time for Shane Mosley to receive the consequences he deserves for lying about his use of performance enhancing drugs,” Conte said Tuesday in an e-mail to USA Today. “Other athletes associated with BALCO who have lied about their use of drugs have been banned from their sport, stripped of their records and medals and even spent time in jail.”

Meanwhile, Judd Burstein, Mosley’s lawyer, said Conte’s allegations “are completely false” and that he us sure that they will have a day in court. “I’m salivating to get Victor Conte under cross examination,” Burstein said.

Tuesday 30, Dec 2008

Did the government commit an illegal act during the BALCO steroid investigation?

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balco-steroidsAn AP report focuses on the high-tech side of the most massive doping scandal in the United States referred to as the BALCO Affair.

There is an ongoing legal dilemma amongst federal judges relating to the seizure of urine samples of more than 100 major league players not originally involved in the BALCO steroid investigation.

The battle is now at the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, in which an 11-member panel must decide whether prosecutors had the legal right to seize the names and urine samples of the 104 players during a raid carried out in 2004.

“There has to be limits when the government seizes vast amount of information on a computer,” Major League Baseball Players Association lawyer Elliot Peters said.

The federal agents who took the material from the Long Beach-based Comprehensive Drug Testing Inc. had a search warrant for the test results of just 10 players, but discovered on a computer spreadsheet the test results of additional players.

The players’ association went to court, and lower-court judges ruled the additional names were seized illegally. A three-judge panel of the 9th Circuit reversed those decisions twice in 2-1 votes, but the entire 9th Circuit set the reversal aside and decided to hear the case en banc.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Douglas Wilson argued Thursday the government had a legal right to investigate all of the players who tested positive because their names and test results were on a single document containing the names of the 10 players listed in the search warrant. Wilson said since the government was entitled to 10 players’ test results, it was entitled to the entire spreadsheet.

Wilson’s argument was attacked early and often by at least six judges, who expressed doubt that a computer spreadsheet is analogous to a paper document, which investigators have a right to seize so long as it contains evidence listed in the search warrant.

“When you are talking about computers, a single document can contain vast amounts of information,” Judge Kim Wardlaw said.
Judge Mylan Smith was even more pointed, complaining that allowing the government on narrowly focused investigations to seize computer databases, hard drives and spreadsheets containing large amounts of information “would probably be frightening to the public because there’s no end to it.”

The BALCO Affair has involved several famous athletes and has resulted to congressional hearings and independent investigations. Most prominent of these investigations is the Mitchell Report, which has probed the use of steroids in the Major League Baseball.

Several personalities were prosecuted and jailed because of their involvement in said scandal including BALCO’s founder Victor Conte, chemist Patrick Arnold who designed “the clear”, containing testosterone, an anabolic steroid, and track athlete Marion Jones.

Monday 29, Dec 2008

Suspended Vikes said they used diuretic to get $400,000 bonus

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williams-steroidsAccording to Minneapolis Star Tribune Vikings defensive tackles Pat Williams and Kevin Williams, also known as the Williams’ Wall, used a banned compound to be eligible for the $400,000 bonus. They will get said reward if they weigh at or below the prescribed weight during several weigh-ins conducted throughout the year.

This information was included in the NFL letter to the Williams’ lawyer in connection with both players’ appeal of their four-game suspensions. More on this from Star Tribune.

The letter was sent by NFL executive vice president Jeffrey Pash on Dec. 2 to Peter Ginsburg, lawyer for the Williams’, denying their appeal of the suspensions. According to the document, the players tested positive “on or about July 26″ and were advised by letter two months later. They appealed, and at their appeal hearing Nov. 20, both players said they took StarCaps “on more than one occasion” the night before a scheduled weigh-in. The supplement contained the banned diuretic known as bumetanide.
According to the letter, both Pat and Kevin Williams get their bonuses if they are at or below their prescribed weight 11 times during the year (eight during the season, three off-season). That weight clause, however, provided that the players “would not engage in any ‘last-minute weight reduction techniques,’ which included ‘use of diuretics.’” Pash also wrote “I accept the representations of both players that they did not use steroids.”

Diuretics, such as bumetanide, have the ability to aid in rapid weight loss by enhancing rapid water loss through urine excretion. Sports organizations like the NFL consider diuretics as masking agents since they can banned compounds such as anabolic steroids by diluting urine.

Monday 29, Dec 2008

Roger Clemens’ affair with steroids, young girls, and defamation suits

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clemensmccready-steroidsRoger Clemens’ alleged romantic and controversial fling, country singer Mindy McCready, had another suicide attempt according to a report by the Boston Herald.

Police reported that the singer cut her wrists and took several pills in an apparent suicide attempt on Dec.17. She was rushed to the hospital after her brother discovered her lying bloodied in her bed.

McCready has two previous attempts to take her own life.

From Boston Herald:

McCready, 33, has had one No. 1 hit, “Guys Do It All the Time”, in 1996. She has struggled in recent years with legal and personal problems that included previous suicide attempts.

According to the police report, McCready called her mother and told her “she had seen her angel baby.” The report did not explain the reference, but it was enough to prompt the mother to call Timothy McCready, 29, who lives with his sister, to check on her.

He told police he found her stumbling in the kitchen but apparently OK. She went back to her room and he went back to his. He went to check on her again after he woke up later that morning and found she had cut her wrists and taken the pills.

“Malinda was not very alert and her bed had blood on it,” the report states, using McCready’s given first name.

In October, the 33-year-old was released from jail in Tennessee after serving about 30 days for violating probation on a 2004 drug charge. She only had to serve about half of her 60-day sentence because of credits she received for good behavior and doing janitorial work in the jail, the Williamson County Sheriff’s Department said.

She was accused in June of falsifying her community service records and charged with violating her probation. McCready received a suspended three-year sentence in 2004 for fraudulently obtaining prescription painkillers.

The New York Daily News has reported in April 2008 that McCready and Clemens had a romantic relationship which started when the singer was only 15 years old. The 44-year-old slugger  denied the report, claiming that they were involved only at a platonic level. Clemens described McCready as a “close family friend”. McCready, however, said they had a sexual relationship.

The blond singer later on denied in a TV interview that their affair began when she was only 15, stating in vague terms that they had sexual relationship “several years later”.

Clemens is currently embroiled in another controversy and this one is in connection with his alleged affair with anabolic steroids and human growth hormone.

The former Yankees pitcher was mentioned 82 times in the Mitchell Report, an independent investigation in the use of performance-enhancing drugs in the Major League Baseball.

In January this year, he filed a defamation suit against his accuser, his former friend and trainer Brian McNamee. McNamee told investigators that he had personally injected Clemens with steroids and human growth hormone.

This month, McNamee filed a counter suit, claiming Clemens libeled and slandered him folllowing the release of the Mitchell Report.

Sunday 28, Dec 2008

Manchester player suspended for stanozolol

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gadd-steroidsLike nandrolone and methandrostenelone, stanozolol is one of the most of abused anabolic steroids by athletes. Some of the most publicized cases of stanozolol abuse include mixed martial arts fighters Tim Sylvia and Kimo Elopoldo, boxer Leopoldo Vargas, hepthathlete Lyudmila Blonkska, and slugger Rafael Palmeiro.

Likewise, MLB’s Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens have been alleged of taking this anabolic steroid.  But perhaps the most controversial case involving stanozolol was of Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson. Johnson tested positive for this prohibited compound after winning the100-meter final at the 1988 Summer Olympics held in Seoul, South Korea. He was subsequently stripped of his medal and record in said event.

Saturday 27, Dec 2008

Another defamation suit in the name of doping

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clemens-mcnamee-steroidsBrian McNamee, Roger Clemens’ former personal trainer, has filed a counter suit against the controversial slugger.

The New York Post reported that McNamee is seeking $10 million in his defamation suit against his former employer, claiming Clemens had libeled and slandered him subsequent to the release of the Mitchell Report. In said report, McNamee revealed he regularly injected the former New York Yankees pitcher with anabolic steroids and human growth hormone.

McNamee, a former New York police officer, later testified at the 2008 United States Congressional hearing in connection with the Mitchell Report.

In January this year, Clemens filed a defamation suit against McNamee refuting the doping allegations of his former trainer.

Last week, McNamees’ lawyers filed a case in Texas wherein they state that their client had been forced to talk to investigators, leaving him no choice but to cooperate. Assistant US Attorney Matthew Parrella supported McNamee’s claim which could make McNamee immune from defamation suit.

Meanwhile, Lara Hollingsworth, one of Clemens’ attorneys, said McNamee should not be immune from the defamation suit.

“(McNamee) was not under court order, he was not under legal compulsion. He talked to Senator Mitchell because it was to his benefit to do so,” Hollingsworth said.

Friday 26, Dec 2008

NASCAR will welcome 2009 with tougher dope testing

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nascar-steroidsAccording to AP report, NASCAR is likely to start testing drivers by the third week of January under anti-doping policy.

NASCAR is implementing tougher policy for use of anabolic steroids and other performance-enhancing drugs. Said policy also applies to illegal drugs and abuse of prescription medications.

Crew members, meanwhile, are required to submit results from an approved lab by Jan.16. A memo was sent to teams enumerating the prohibited compounds for which crew members must be tested. No specific guidelines were provided for drivers as NASCAR reserves the right to screen drivers for any compounds. However, according to a NASCAR’s spokesman, drivers will definitely be screened for performance-enhancing drugs.

The tougher policy was adopted partly because of former Truck Series driver Aaron Fike’s public admission that he had used heroin even on days he raced. Veteran drivers like Tony Stewart and Kevin Harvick urged the association to strengthen its policy regarding the use of banned compounds.

In September this year, Ron Hornaday Jr admitted he used a testosterone cream during the 2004 and 2005 to treat a medical condition. Hornaday is suffering from Graves’ disease, a thyroid disorder characterized by goiter and exophthalmos (bulging of the eyes).

The memo, dated Dec. 8, is the first time the new policy has been laid out in writing and specifies who falls under the guidelines. Those who must be tested before Jan. 16 include: pit crew members, including “over-the-wall” crew members, the crew chief, car chief, team members responsible for tires, fuel and pit crew operation, spotters and race-day support personnel that includes engineers, engine tuners, shock specialists, chassis specialists and tire specialists.

Among the substances those participants must be tested for are:

_ Seven different amphetamines, including methamphetamine and PMA, a synthetic psychostimulant and hallucinogen.

_ Three drugs classified under ephedrine.

_ 13 different narcotics, including codeine and morphine.

_ Ten different benzodiazepines and barbituates.

_ Marijuana, cocaine, zolpidem, nitrites, chromates and drugs that can increase specific gravity.

Under the old policy, NASCAR only implemented random test based on suspicion of abuse. Under the new guidelines everyone will be tested before the season begins, and random testing will continue throughout the year. NASCAR expects to randomly test 12 to 14 individuals per series each weekend in 2009.

Friday 26, Dec 2008

Marion Jones says she had paid the ultimate price because of doping

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marionjones-steroidsDisgraced sprinter Marion Jones once again appeared in a TV show to profess her innocence in the BALCO doping controversy that has ruined many athletes’ stellar career.

In her recent appearance on “Good Morning America” Jones  admits the incident may have ruined her reputation forever but she hopes that she can prevent others from committing the mistakes she has made. This is the same mantra she uttered at the “Oprah Winfrey Show”, her first interview since she was released from prison in September. Expect the same tune to be played in 2009 as the former track star is apparently running a crusade to “reach out” to youths out there.

“I have paid the ultimate price,” she said on “Good Morning America“. “For the rest of my life, certain people will equate me with this controversy.

“Throughout all of this I’ve learned I’ve hurt a lot of people and it’s my responsibility to give back,” the 33-year-old said.

Up to this day, Jones insists she has no knowledge that prohibited compounds were being administered to her. This despite of her six-month imprisonment for lying about her anabolic steroid use and her involvement in a check-fraud scheme.

BALCO’s Victor Conte had consistently refuted Jones’ claims. “She did the injection with me sitting right there next to her,” he said in December 2004.

Between these two controversial figures, who do you think people would believe?

On Oprah, Jones apologized to her teammates who were stripped of their medals and records because of her doping violation during the 2000 Sydney Olympics.

“When I stepped on that track, I thought everybody was drug-free, including myself,” Jones said. “I apologize for having to put everybody through all of this.

“I’m trying to move on. I hope that everybody else can move on, too.”

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