MOSCOW, June 11. /TASS/. Whistleblower of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), former head of Russia's national anti-doping laboratory Grigory Rodchenkov provided the International Biathlon Union (IBU) with additional information and the corresponding documents on the corruption within the organization, the interim report of the IBU external independent review commission, published on the organization’s official website, reads.
Earlier, Rodchenkov passed the information over to WADA that former President of the Russian Biathlon Union, four-time Olympic gold medalist Alexander Tikhonov was aware of the fact that the Russian side had transferred a large amount of money to former IBU head Anders Besseberg and Secretary General Nicole Resch, who possibly covered up the positive doping samples of Russian biathletes. These testimonies formed the backbone of the anti-corruption investigation launched by the Austrian police in 2018. Tikhonov himself blasted the statements made by Rodchenkov as false in an interview with TASS.
Rodchenkov’s testimony prompted Besseberg and Resch to leave their posts before the investigation was completed. In December 2018, investigators visited the residence of the Russian biathlon team, which had arrived in Austria to compete in Biathlon World Championship races. In accordance with the Austrian criminal procedures, they notified a number of Russian athletes and specialists that an investigation was being conducted into the possible violations of the anti-doping rules, committed at the 2017 World Championships in Hochfilzen.
"We have interviewed a number of further witnesses/potential witnesses. In particular, the Commission's Legal Secretary and I interviewed Dr Grigory Rodchenkov, former head of the Moscow anti-doping laboratory, in relation to his allegations relating to the IBU and Russian biathlon referenced in the WADA report that prompted the pending criminal investigations. Dr Rodchenkov provided significant further information and documents, and has agreed to continue to assist the Commission with its inquiries," the commission report reads.
Since January 2016, Grigory Rodchenkov has been residing in the United States. Two criminal cases were launched against him in Russia, he is indicted on counts of power abuse and illegal distribution of highly potent or toxic substances. The court arrested him in absentia.