In the Netherlands, the disciplinary proceedings relating to possible doping violations are the responsibility of the sports associations. A number of sports associations have their ‘own’ disciplinary and appeals committees but a large, and increasing, number of associations call in the Institute for Sports Law (ISR), which now makes decisions on behalf of 75% of the associations.
The position of the Doping Authority in disciplinary procedures
The disciplinary and appeals committees arrive at their decisions independently of the Doping Authority. This does not mean that the Doping Authority is not closely involved in disciplinary proceedings relating to possible doping violations. Clearly, the Doping Authority's task is to ensure that disciplinary proceedings for doping cases in the Netherlands are conducted correctly in accordance with the World Anti-Doping Code and Dutch doping regulations based on that code. The Doping Regulations of the sports associations and the ISR describe and determine the various tasks incumbent upon the Doping Authority in disciplinary procedures. Those tasks involve, on the one hand, supporting and advising the disciplinary bodies in the interpretation and application of the doping regulations and, on the other, correcting decisions that do not comply with those regulations.
The auxiliary role is seen primarily in the contributions made by the Doping Authority during the disciplinary procedures: the Doping Authority is cognisant of the case, states written arguments in which all the relevant regulatory factors are discussed and explained, and also speaks at hearings it attends.
The corrective role is seen primarily in the right to appeal that the Doping Authority has in all doping cases, both with national appeals committees and with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Lausanne. Furthermore, the Doping Authority is competent to initiate proceedings with the disciplinary committee of an association independently without calling in the board of the association. In 2014, the Doping Authority submitted an appeal to the CAS in one case; a decision in that case is expected in 2015.
The Doping Authority submitted written arguments in the initial proceedings in all disciplinary procedures during the year under review and attended all the hearings organised as part of these proceedings. When athletes and/or associations appealed against decisions, supplementary statements of arguments were written in all cases.
Reporting to WADA and International Sports Federations
The Doping Authority reports on the disciplinary proceedings in doping cases to WADA, which is also entitled to appeal against decisions in those cases. The reports take the form of sending the written decision to WADA, answering supplementary questions upon request and producing supplementary documents and translations of relevant parts of a file. In 2014, a decision was made by the CAS in one case involving an appeal by WADA against a decision made by a Dutch disciplinary body.
The Doping Authority also reports upon request to international sports federations but only if the Dutch sports association in question does not do so or fails to do so in full. International federations are also entitled to make appeals in Dutch doping procedures but no international federation appealed against any decisions made by Dutch disciplinary bodies in 2014.
Reporting on disciplinary decisions
Since 2013, the Doping Authority has reported on disciplinary proceedings in doping cases in its own annual report. In that way, the Doping Authority will be reporting - as described above - on procedures in which the Doping Authority is indeed very closely involved but for which the primary responsibility resides elsewhere (in other words, with the sports associations). The decision to proceed in this way was based primarily on the dissolution of the Doping Affairs Audit Committee, a board committee of the NOC*NSF, which published periodical reports prior to 2013 about disciplinary proceedings relating to all cases of doping in the Netherlands.
The table below lists all eight decisions made by the Dutch disciplinary and appeals bodies in doping proceedings during 2014 (inclusion in the table depends upon the date of the decision).
In one case, after the case was transferred to the Doping Authority by the International Federation in question, a therapeutic use exemption was granted after all for the use of the substance found. The relevant international federation was advised that, from the point of view of the Doping Authority, there were no longer any grounds for proceeding with this case. The federation in question did indeed terminate proceedings.
The reports include only definitive decisions that are no longer open to appeal. If the decision has been made pursuant to an appeal, this is stated in the final column together with an indication of which party or parties submitted the appeal. If the doping violation has been transferred to the Netherlands for disciplinary proceedings by an organisation from another country, this is also stated.
|Athletics||Testosterone||two-year suspension||2014||Case handed over by IAAF|
|Cricket||Cocaine / MDMA||one-year suspension||2013||Decision in appeal instigated by athlete; Doping Authority has submitted an appeal to CAS|
|Triathlon||Clomifene||file closed||2014||Case handed over by ITU; Therapeutic use exemption granted after transfer|
|Cycling||Methylhexanamine||eighteen-month suspension||2013||Second offence|
|Wrestling||Tampering/attempted tampering||two-year suspension||2012||Decision in appeal instigated by coach|