How can we better counter the illegal trade of dangerous doping substances? Anti-doping agencies and law enforcement authorities met today in Budapest to reinforce their joint response.
Europol today shared best practices with the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), Eurojust, national anti-doping agencies and law enforcement authorities at a workshop organised by the Hungarian National Anti-Doping Organization (HUNADO) in Budapest, the European Capital of Sport 2019.
Fair sport means fair play
Regulators need to examine athletes and stop the supply of doping substances to keep sport fair. To defend the rights of clean athletes, WADA has created standardised doping control procedures for every national anti-doping organisation to implement. Checks are, however, not the only measure to be taken. It is also crucial to combat trafficking these dangerous substances and to eliminate their supply.
Several European countries implemented a separate criminal offence for trafficking of doping substances due to its severe health hazards. The use of such substances is punishable in several countries, both inside and outside the EU.
Enhancing the international response to doping
The cooperation between anti-doping organisations and law enforcement authorities was enhanced in 2015 by adopting the UNESCO international convention against doping in sport. This Convention, along with the World Anti-Doping Code, obliges anti-doping organisations and law enforcement authorities to cooperate.
Moreover, the Europol-coordinated project Viribus was launched in 2018 to fight the traffic of doping substances across the EU. Information sharing and close cooperation between law enforcement and anti-doping agencies have already resulted in a more coordinated international response to the trafficking of doping substances.