Cocaine, Doping and the Court of Arbitration for Sport -- 'I Don't Like the Drugs, But the Drugs Like Me'
15 Pages Posted: 1 May 2014
Date Written: April 29, 2014
Cocaine is one of the most widely consumed drugs in the world. It is also one of the most often detected stimulants by anti-doping authorities. Indeed, cocaine poses serious difficulties to sporting tribunals, as it challenges the legal boundaries of the World Anti Doping Code (WADC) drafted by the World Anti Doping Agency (WADA). Where does the private life of an athlete start and where does it end? Are there any legal mechanisms in place to take in account the specific context that has lead to the contamination of an athlete? Is the sporting justice, and especially the Court of Arbitration for sport (CAS), showing clemency in regard to cocaine cases? In order to tackle these concerns, Section 1 will introduce the WADC 2009 rules. Thereafter, I will review the case law of the CAS on cocaine in Section 2 and draw some conclusions on the strict interpretation of the WADC by the CAS in Section 3. The new WADC 2015 and its potential repercussions in the context of cocaine cases will be discussed in Section 4. I will conclude by urging the CAS to make a long-overdue interpretative turn in anti‐doping cases, leaving more room for contextual analysis and flexibility in the enforcement phase of the WADC.
Keywords: Sports Law, Doping, Court of Arbitration for Sport, Cocaine, Sports Governance
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