Jamaican sprinters in the clear from 2013 hotel raid
Asafa Powell and Sherone Simpson, the veteran Jamaican sprinters, have seen their criminal doping investigation dropped in Italy.
Powell, Simpson and their Canadian fitness trainer Chris Xuereb were placed under criminal investigation two years ago after Italian police confiscated drugs during a hotel raid when the trio were training at Lignano Sabbiadoro in July 2013.
Both Powell and Simpson had already received an 18-month suspension by the Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission in April 2013, which was reduced after appealing to the Court of Arbitration for Sport in July 2013 and the pair returning to the international stage last July.
A preliminary trial judge threw out the case yesterday at the request of prosecutors in Udine, Italy.
Both athletes had tested positive for the banned stimulant Oxilofrine at Jamaica’s 2013 National Championships, which they claimed was contained in a tainted supplement supplied to them by Xuereb who had been hired by their agent Paul Doyle.
And Antonio Pisapia, the Udine police chief, admitted that the only questionable substance discovered in the drugs raid was Oxilofrine, which is only banned during competition.
Powell, the fastest Jamaican in the world last year and a former 100m world record-holder, failed once again in the 100m at the recent World Championships in Beijing. However, he was part of Jamaica’s victorious in the Men’s 4x100m relay event in China to take his tally to five medals from five appearances in the World Championships and as he will be will be 33 in November is likely to retire after next year’s Olympic Games in Rio, Brazil.