AIU refutes Kiprop sample-tampering allegations

The Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) has denied allegations of sample-tampering made by Asbel Kiprop after the former 1500 metres Olympic champion failed a drugs test.

Kiprop on Thursday insisted he was a clean athlete after it was reported that he tested positive for banned substance EPO in an out-of-competition sample.

The 28-year-old Kenyan later claimed he was asked for money by an anti-doping officer after providing a urine sample, having also been given advanced notice he would be tested on a specific date last November.

Kiprop stated that he paid the money, which he did not see as an "inducement or bribe", in good faith and it is not beyond his suspicion that he tested positive because the fee paid was not enough. 

The AIU on Friday confirmed the 2008 Olympic champion, who also claims he was offered a 'reward' of being an IAAF ambassador on anti-doping, has been charged with anti-doping violations and refuted several of his allegations.

"Mr Kiprop has made a number of public allegations in relation to the sample collection process. These allegations have been investigated by the AIU," An AIU statement said:

"The AIU is satisfied that there has been no mix up or tampering with the Sample and that the Sample collected from the Athlete on 27 November 2017 was the same Sample analysed by the Laboratory and reported as an Adverse Analytical Finding.

"The AIU has confirmed that the Doping Control Assistant involved in testing Mr Kiprop on 27 November 2017 (who is known to Mr Kiprop) admitted that he provided Mr Kiprop with advanced notice of the testing that was to take place on that date. This is extremely disappointing.

"The AIU has submitted to the Tribunal that these actions may constitute a departure from the requirements of the International Standard for Testing and Investigations ("ISTI").

"Under the Rules, a departure from the requirements of the ISTI will only invalidate an Adverse Analytical Finding if that departure could reasonably have caused the Adverse Analytical Finding.

"The advanced notice of testing given by the Doping Control Assistant could not reasonably have caused EPO to be present in Mr Kiprop's Sample and, as such, the departure does not invalidate the Adverse Analytical Finding.

"This will ultimately be a matter for the Tribunal to determine. Mr Kiprop alleges that the confidentiality of the proceedings was breached by the AIU. This allegation is rejected.

"The AIU has fully adhered to the principle of confidentiality throughout. In relation to Mr Kiprop's allegation that he was offered a 'reward' of being an IAAF ambassador on anti-doping, this is also rejected.

"Prior to the commencement of the disciplinary proceedings AIU investigators met with Mr Kiprop. The purpose of the meetings was to notify him of the positive test and give him the opportunity to admit any offence promptly or to provide information about doping in athletics that could amount to "substantial assistance".

"This is standard practice for the AIU when serious doping substances have been detected in any sample. Any suggestion that there was anything improper about this conversation is categorically untrue."

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