By Susan Westemeyer
Andrey Kashechkin is ready to present his case that doping controls violate basic human rights. The Kazakh rider, who tested positive for blood doping in August, has a hearing before a Belgian court on November 6 to challenge the right of sport officials to conduct doping tests.
In an interview with the AFP news agency, his lawyer, Luc Misson, said that he will base his argument on article 8 of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, which says that only public authorities can interfere in people's private lives, and that "the sports authorities are not the public authorities." Even collecting blood samples violates human rights, he said.
Misson said that he was prepared to take Kashechkin's case all the way to the highest court. "If we lose, we will go to the court of appeal, then the Supreme Court of Appeal, then the European Court of Human Rights," he said. "And then we will be in a very good position. At the human rights court it would lead to a [favourable] decision at a world, if not a European level."
He was also the attorney for Jean-Marc Bosman, a Belgian soccer player, who basically ended the payment of transfer fees in professional football under EU law. At the time, Bosman's contract had expired and wanted to change teams from the Belgian to the French League, but the teams could not resolve their differences about how much the transfer sum would be. The subsequent court ruling allowed freedom of movement of players in the European Union.
"The Kashechkin case, as regards [the] anti-doping [rules], could be viewed in a similar vein as the Bosman ruling," Misson stated.