Doping-RUSADA files CAS appeal seeking 'appropriate consequences' for Valieva

FILE PHOTO: 2022 Beijing Olympics - Figure Skating - Women Single Skating - Free Skating - Capital Indoor Stadium, Beijing, China - February 17, 2022. Kamila Valieva of the Russian Olympic Committee reacts after her performance. REUTERS/Eloisa Lopez/File Photo

(Reuters) - The Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) has performed an about-turn in the case of Kamila Valieva and asked the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) to sanction the figure skater and set aside a ruling from RUSADA's own disciplinary tribunal.

Sport's highest court said on Friday that RUSADA had lodged an appeal seeking a ruling that would sanction Valieva after the disciplinary tribunal of Russia's anti-doping body had found the teenager not guilty of any doping infraction.

CAS also confirmed appeals from the International Skating Union (ISU) and the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), which were announced by the bodies earlier this week, against the decision that found the athlete bore "no fault or negligence."

Valieva tested positive for the banned substance trimetazidine at the Russian national championships in December 2021 but the result was only made known on Feb. 8, 2022 a day after she helped her team win a gold medal at the Beijing Olympics.

In her defence, Valieva said the positive test was the result of a mix-up with her grandfather's heart medication.

A RUSADA investigation released in January acknowledged that Valieva did fail a drug test but ruled that the teenager was not guilty of any doping infraction.

"RUSADA seeks a ruling from CAS setting aside the challenged decision and finding the athlete to have committed an anti-doping rule violation under the RUSADA anti-doping rules, and sanctioned with 'the appropriate consequences' ...," CAS said in a statement.

RUSADA added that the consequences "may include or be limited to a reprimand".

Despite the positive test, CAS cleared Valieva to continue competing at the Beijing Games in the women's singles, upholding an earlier decision by RUSADA to lift a ban on the skater.

During the Beijing Games, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) decided that no medals for the team figure skating event would be presented until Valieva's case had been resolved.

(Reporting by Aadi Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Toby Davis)

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