Information Gathered on New Law Leads to 4-Year Doping Ban

Information from the first case to be prosecuted under a new law to criminalize large-scale doping conspiracies was used to impose a four-year ban on a Georgia triple jumper.

The United States Anti-Doping Agency announced on Thursday the sanction of Sabina Allen, 27, from Norcross, Georgia, who competes for Jamaica.

Allen tested positive for two banned substances after finishing first in a low-level event in Chula Vista, Calif., last May. His ban is retroactive to June 24, 2021.

The evidence in the case came from a criminal case against Eric Lira, a naturopathic doctor from El Paso, Texas. In January, federal prosecutors charged Lira with supplying performance-enhancing drugs to athletes. Among them was Nigerian star sprinter Blessing Okagbare.

Lira was charged under the Rodchenkov Anti-Doping Law, which was passed to prosecute people and organizations that fund and promote international doping programs.

Although the law was not designed to go after individual athletes, it opened up opportunities for information sharing between law enforcement and anti-doping regulators.

USADA said arbitrators in the case determined Allen’s claims that she used performance enhancers inadvertently — or that the positive effects occurred because drugs were tampered with — were false. These decisions were made using messages that undermined Allen’s defense and were provided by federal prosecutors in the Lira case.

“The information shared by law enforcement about the first RADA case involving Eric Lira has allowed USADA to expose the truth in this case,” USADA CEO Travis Tygart said. “We thank the FBI, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, and other federal agencies for their continued work to protect the integrity of sports under RADA.

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