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Russian parliament suggests 3-year prison term for substituting doping samples

November 08, 2016, 19:33 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The State Duma adopted a law in early November on criminal liability for coercing into doping

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© Valeriy Sharifulin/TASS

MOSCOW, November 8. /TASS/. The State Duma, the lower house of Russia’s parliament, has proposed introducing imprisonment for a term of up to three years for manipulating doping tests, member of the Duma Committee for Physical Culture and Sports Dmitry Svishchyov told TASS on Tuesday.

The lawmaker said the bill was expected to be submitted for discussion soon.

The State Duma adopted a law in early November on criminal liability for coercing into doping.

"I proposed a punishment term of about three years," Svishchyov said.

"But the government sent amendments to the bill "for encouragement into doping" where it recommended that the term be cut to one year. I believe that the same will be in this case and our proposal will be amended," the lawmaker said.

"If we have introduced criminal liability for encouragement and coercion [into doping], then the same punishment should be introduced for falsification with [doping] samples. This will stop and sober up athletes and show that falsification is not worth doing for athletes to become medal holders for a while. If athletes themselves are involved in the falsification of samples, this law will be applicable to them as well," the lawmaker said.

Under the law adopted by the State Duma, a coach, a doctor or some other physical culture and sports specialist who has given an athlete banned substances "irrespective of his/her consent," will face a penalty of up to 1 million rubles or the restriction of freedom for a term of up to two years. Also, an offender may be prohibited to hold certain posts or engage in certain activities for a term of up to four years.

If these crimes entail the death of an athlete or other grave consequences through negligence, a person guilty of these offences may face the deprivation of freedom for a term of up to three years. A court will also be able to prohibit a convicted person to hold certain posts or engage in certain activities.

Russian President Vladimir Putin confirmed in October at a session of the Council for the Development of Physical Culture and Sports that the work to fight doping abuse in Russia would be carried out to the end.

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