Judgment On Sports Scientist Stephen Dank Stalled By ASADA's Bureaucratic Issue
Sports scientist Stephen Dank's "judgment day with anti-doping authorities has been stalled after a seven-member expert panel that had been preparing to make the critical next call on the central figure in Australian sport's most scandalous drugs case did not sit as planned," according to Lane & Masters of the SYDNEY MORNING HERALD. The Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority's Anti-Doping Rule Violation Panel, "which was a seven-member body as of late February, was effectively rendered dysfunctional by the recent departure of four former members." Three members of the ADRVP can assess "any matter referred to it by the ASADA, but the expert panel, which can be a body of up to nine, must have four members in total to be considered valid." Dank was "furious following ASADA’s latest embarrassment." Dank: "It shows a complete lack of respect towards me and now this will only resolve us to accelerate all appropriate legal action." Dank and his team have "actions pending" against ASADA, the Australian Football League, National Rugby League and numerous media outlets for a "myriad of claims including wrongful dismissal, loss of income and defamation" (SMH, 4/10). In Sydney, Margie McDonald reported former ASADA CEO Richard Ings said that the "ministerial oversight was a 'roadblock' and 'an embarrassment' but that the probe into Dank's activities would continue." Ings: "If the ADRVP does not have a functioning quorum of members, it is embarrassing. But it does not derail any investigation" (THE AUSTRALIAN, 4/11).