Malaysia, Apr 15, 2014: The one-year sanction against Korean badminton players, Kim Ki Jung and Lee Yong Dae, has been reversed and they are eligible to resume playing immediately.

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This decision has been taken by the BWF Doping Hearing Panel based on significant new evidence which was presented recently in the Disciplinary Committee process against the Badminton Korea Association (BKA) and in the Joint Appeal Brief to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).

Having considered this, the BWF Doping Hearing Panel determined this new and important information should have been made available when the case was heard in January. The information and evidence presented at the January hearing was insufficient and ambiguous and there was no proof beyond reasonable doubt that the players were not at fault. The appropriate decision applied at that time.

However, this new evidence renders the CAS Appeal almost entirely unnecessary as it means “material evidence” would be presented for the first time without having been made available to or evaluated by the BWF Doping Hearing Panel. Given the substantial new information in the case, the Panel decided to review its original decision.

The Panel has determined all strikes for Missed Tests and Filing Failures against both players in 2013 are cancelled and that no violation was therefore committed. Any record of the sanction against the two doubles’ specialists has been expunged and Lee Yong Dae has been reinstated as a member of the BWF Athletes’ Commission.

It is mandatory for players on the BWF’s Registered Testing Pool to provide accurate and up-to-date Whereabouts information and this is an individual responsibility. BKA had assumed an administrative role in managing Korean players’ Whereabouts programme. Following the players’ hearing in January, a disciplinary case was brought against BKA in relation to this matter. The association was fined USD 41,170 for breaching the BWF Anti-Doping Regulations – which BKA admitted – and for failing in its duty of care for Kim and Lee through administrative failure, thereby contributing to the three strikes against the players which made them ineligible.

Kim and Lee had been sanctioned for violating the requirements relating to filing Whereabouts information and resulting Missed Tests under the BWF Anti-Doping Regulations (Section 2.4). Their one-year period of ineligibility was to have run from 23 January 2014 to midnight on 23 January 2015. —- BWF

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