Experts discuss legal side of doping in sport

Bill Bock, the new general counsel for USADA,

Bill Bock, the new general counsel for USADA, (Image credit: Mark Zalewski)

By Mark Zalewski, North American Editor in Chicago

The sports law committee of the Chicago Bar Association hosted a panel discussion regarding legal issues involved with doping in sport on Tuesday. Moderated by Lester Muson, a well-known American sports writer with ESPN and himself a lawyer, the panel consisted of Bill Bock, the newly appointed general counsel for the US Anti-doping Agency (USADA), Steven J. Thompson, a frequent defense counsel to athletes in drug testing cases and Greg Lemond, three-time Tour de France winner and advocate against doping in cycling.

The seminar, entitled Legal and Ethical Issues of Testing for Performance Enhancing Drugs in Sport, was focused for the audience, made up of association lawyers continuing their required ongoing professional education. However, the discussion by the panelists included interesting angles on the issue - both from the enforcement and the defense sides - as well as Lemond continuing his public fight against doping.

Bill Bock was the first to speak, and much of his presentation was of a general nature - trying to bring the audience to a common level of understanding of doping in sport. His examples centered mostly on U.S. track and field athletes that involved the BALCO scandal, which spawned US Attorney and Congressional investigations. Bock showed evidence obtained by USADA from confessed performance enhancing drug users - including disturbing emails from BALCO's Victor Conte and detailed calendars of drug regiments from Kelli White, the disqualified world champion runner.

To read the full feature on the legal side of doping, click here.

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