WADA suspends testing lab in Olympic host city Rio
MONTREAL (AP) — The World Anti-Doping Agency suspended the testing laboratory in Olympic host city Rio de Janeiro for its second violation within 20 months.
WADA announced the decision Friday, 10 months before football players’ samples are expected to be analyzed there during the 2014 World Cup.
“The suspension, which became effective as of Aug. 8, 2013, prohibits the (laboratory) from carrying out any WADA-related anti-doping activities,” the agency said in a statement.
WADA said its executive committee could decide on “possible revocation” of the Rio center’s accreditation.
It did not specify a reason or identify which international standards the lab failed to meet.
“WADA is responsible for accrediting and re-accrediting anti-doping laboratories, thereby ensuring that they maintain the highest quality standards. Whenever a laboratory does not meet ... requirements, WADA may suspend the laboratory’s accreditation,” the agency said.
Construction on a new building for the lab, known as LADETEC in Portuguese, started in February and was expected to be finished early in 2014. Rio organizers previously said the upgrade would allow the lab to carry out 7,000 tests during the 2016 Olympics and Paralympics.
In 2012, the lab was barred from performing isotope ratio mass spectrometry (IRMS) tests for nine months after falsely accusing a Brazilian beach volleyball player of doping with testosterone.
Then, the International Volleyball Federation asked WADA to investigate a “regrettable incident.”
The Rio lab has three weeks to file an appeal at the Court of Arbitration for Sport against the latest sanction.