MOSCOW, November 3. /TASS/. The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) will hold hearings on November 14-17 into an appeal of Valentin Balakhnichev, the former head of the All-Russia Athletics Federation (ARAF), against the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), the court’s press service announced on Thursday.
Balakhnichev submitted his lawsuit with the Swiss-based court in February after IAAF suspended him for life from all sports-related activities.
On January 7, the IAAF Ethics Committee suspended for life from all athletics activities Balakhnichev, Papa Massata Diack (a son of IAAF’s ex-President Lamine Diack) as well as Alexei Melnikov, ARAF’s National Team coach for long distance running and race walkers.
The Ethics Committee found Balakhnichev guilty of entering a conspiracy with Diack and Melnikov against opening proceedings on doping-abuse charges in regard to Russian athlete Lilia Shobukhova. The later allegedly transferred money to the officials at the issue to avoid suspension after caught using performance enhancing drugs
The WADA Independent Commission was set up and began its work in early 2015, following a series of German documentaries on the alleged mass use of performance enhancing drugs among Russian athletes.
Balakhnichev held the post of the president of ARAF since 1991 and he resigned in 2015 following a chain of high-profile doping scandals involving Russian track and field athletes.