ASADA slaps Shayna Jack with maximum ban
SHAYNA Jack has been formally notified that she will receive a four-year suspension for testing positive to the banned muscle building drug Ligandrol unless she can prove her innocence.
It is understood Jack has been informed by the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority that the penalty she will receive will be four years, which is the standard sanction for drugs that are classified as anabolic agents.
There are several ways she can get a reduction but the onus will be on her legal team to prove the drug got into her system without her knowledge, otherwise she will get the maximum penalty.
Her lawyers will argue that the 20-year-old Jack's adverse samples were caused by contamination, but pleading ignorance won't help her case because she needs to identify the source and prove she made an innocent mistake.
Former ASADA chief Richard Ings said the initial four-year ban that Jack will receive is "standard".
"You've got positive A and positive B sample and the process is you get a letter, you will be suspended, then you have right to request a tribunal hearing with the Court Arbitration for Sport," Ings said.
"I wouldn't draw any conclusion from the four-year ban, that happens in every matter. The issuing of notification of a four-year ban is standard practice in all these matters."
"For an athlete to receive less than a four-year ban they must provide evidence of mitigating circumstances and a clear explanation of where the prohibited substance came from."
Jack has pointed to a possible contaminated supplement as the reason to why she may have had Ligandrol in her system.
One anti-doping expert that said a 'contaminated supplement' is a very 'real scenario'. Jack would need to show how the supplement she took was contaminated.
Last month UFC fighter Yoel Romero received $27.45 million in a lawsuit versus Gold Star Performance Products after a New Jersey civil court determined that the company made a tainted supplement that caused him to fail a drug test and led to a six-month suspension from the USADA in April 2016.
Throughout the process, Romero has maintained that the New Jersey-based supplement company misrepresented ingredients of its Shred RX diuretic capsules, which failed to indicate that it contained the banned substance.
If the fallen swimmer can prove her supplement was contaminated, Jack will almost certainly still receive a heavily reduced suspension, even if only three months, because of zero tolerance policies.
That means she will be registered with a doping conviction in exactly the same way China's Sun Yang was when he tested positive in 2014 for heart medication prescribed to him by his doctor.
The only way Jack can be completely cleared, is if she can prove that she was the victim of sabotage and can also identify the culprit, who could face criminal charges.
And no matter what the final decision is, both swimming's world governing body FINA and the World Anti-Doping Agency will review the case, and can submit an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Switzerland if they aren't satisfied with the findings.
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