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US Senate passes anti-doping sports bill
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US Senate passes anti-doping sports bill

The US Senate unanimously passed a bill Monday that would allow justice officials to impose criminal sanctions on individuals involved in international doping fraud conspiracies. This act, known as the Rodchenkov Anti-Doping Act of 2019, would provide restitution to victims and require information sharing with the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA).

The bill would make it unlawful for any person other than an athlete to influence any major international sports competition by use of a prohibited substance or prohibited method. Anyone who violates the law would face imprisonment of no more than 10 years, as well as a fine of $250,000 if the person is an individual or $1 million if the defendant is not an individual. Additionally, any property that is used or intended to be used to violate the act, or was obtained in connection with it, may be seized and criminally forfeited.

In a comment on the passage of the bill, USADA CEO Travis T. Tygart stated,

The Act establishes criminal penalties for systems that carry out doping-fraud schemes that rob athletes, citizens and businesses. It also protects whistleblowers from retaliation and provides restitution for athletes defrauded by conspiracies to dope. It is a monumental day in the fight for clean sport worldwide and we look forward to seeing the Act soon become law and help change the game for clean athletes for the good.

The bill passed the House unanimously on October 22. Because the bill passed both the House and the Senate, it now needs the signature of the president to become law.