IOC member and chair of the Disciplinary Commission, Denis Oswald, while speaking as the IOC Session concluded in Lima, Peru on Friday, updated the IOC membership on the retests of samples from the Beijing 2008 and London 2012 summer Olympics, along with the investigation into the alleged doping violations by Russian athletes at Sochi 2014.
Oswald said evidence gathered so far relating to Sochi 2014 will be partnered with results of tests to determine whether urine and blood sample bottles had been tampered with in an effort to replace positive samples with clean samples.
“We feel we have found a number of elements to charge a certain number of athletes,” Oswald said, according to the Reuters news agency. “In a few days we will have the results of the first batch of 50 bottles (determining whether or not they had been tampered with) and then we can proceed.”
Oswald said the first hearings could start next month, noting that his commission could only ban athletes from the Olympics ahead of the 2018 Games in Pyeongchang. Oswald’s report into the matter, which he said would be completed before the end of 2017, is set to determine whether Russian athletes will be able to compete at next year’s Games.
Oswald said: “We can only disqualify athletes. We have been working closely with winter sports federations and they will be ready as soon as we have made our decision to go on with their own procedure.”
IOC has also fired another warning shot at weightlifting amid its reform efforts.
Following the formation of the Commission which came after the IWF in June approved a new anti-doping taskforce to meet an ultimatum issued by the IOC, the Committee warned that weightlifting faces exclusion from the 2024 Games if it fails to provide a “satisfactory report” on how it will address its long-running doping problem.