Veronica Campbell-Brown cleared rule violation

Lausanne, 25 February 2014 – The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has issued its decision in an urgent arbitration brought by the Jamaican sprinter Veronica Campbell-Brown against the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association (JAAA) and the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF).

The CAS has upheld the appeal filed by Veronica Campbell-Brown and has set aside the decisions of the Doping Review Board of the International Association of Athletics Federations dated 10 February 2014 and of the Jamaica Athletics Administration Association dated 12 February 2014.

On 4 May 2013, the athlete underwent a doping control at the Jamaica Invitation Meet which returned a positive result for the specified substance hydrochlorothiazide. Ms Campbell-Brown accepted a provisional suspension from 16 June 2013 while the investigations were taking place.

In October 2013, the JAAA Disciplinary Panel recommended that Ms Campbell-Brown be sanctioned with a reprimand and public warning. The file was subsequently passed to the IAAF Doping Review Board which declared that the athlete’s provisional suspension would remain in place pending its determination. On 10 February 2014, the IAAF Review Board issued its directions to the JAAA Disciplinary Panel, recommending that a two-year suspension be imposed on the athlete.

On 12 February 2014, the JAAA Disciplinary Panel issued its final decision in this matter, confirming the two-year suspension. The same day, Ms Campbell-Brown filed her appeal to the CAS requesting that the decisions taken by the IAAF Doping Review Board and the JAAA Disciplinary Panel be set aside, arguing that there was no valid or admissible evidence upon which to find that she had committed an anti-doping rule violation and that accordingly, no consequences could be imposed on her.

The athlete argued that the WADA International Standards for Testing (IST) have been violated during the course of the sample collection process, thus compromising the integrity of the urine sample collected.

Veronica Campbell-Brown requested an expedited procedure in order for a decision to be issued in time for her to register for the 2014 IAAF Indoor Championships, should she succeed in her appeal. The IAAF and JAAA agreed to such request and a hearing was held on Friday, 21 February 2014 before the panel of CAS arbitrators appointed to decide the dispute (Mr Philippe Sands QC, United Kingdom (President), Mr Jeffrey G. Benz, USA, and the Hon. Michael J. Beloff QC, United Kingdom). At the request of the parties, the arbitration procedure has been kept confidential.

The full arbitral award, with the grounds for the Panel’s decision, will be issued to the parties in a few weeks. —- CAS

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