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UCI Anti-Doping Commission Names Announced: And They're Impressive Names!




I didn't see a thing about this here, so I thought I'd add one.

The UCI have given us three names for their commission to investigate doping, including the UCI's role in it. And... I'm impressed.

The chairman will be Dick Marty. He's a Swiss politician. Earlier in his career, he served as prosecutor in Ticino, where he was hailed for his work fighting organised crime and drug dealers, and received awards from the US and from international organisations. He's also lead international investigations before - Marty was the man who headed the Council of Europe's investigation into CIA torture practices, which condemned 14 European states for collaborating in rendition. He also headed an investigation into human organ trafficking in Kosovo... which ended up accusing the Prime Minister of Kosovo of murdering prisoners to sell their organs. And since apparently the enmity of half the governments of europe and being on a bunch of kosovan and albanian hit lists isn't enough controversy, he's also published reports calling for the liberalisation of euthanasia.

On the face of it, he doesn't seem like the guy you go to to have your scandal quietly brushed under a carpet.

Next up, Ulrich Haas. Haas doesn't have the high profile of Marty, as he's primarily a lawyer and academic. He has a broad and varied area of expertise, including sports law, so I guess he's there to provide a technical background. Cycling fans may have heard the name before, though: he was on the CAS panels that banned Contador and Valverde.

And last but not least, there's Peter Nicholson. A former army officer, he has built a career in war crime investigation, working at the International Criminal Tribunal of Yugoslavia, the International Criminal Court, and the UN International Independent Investigations Commission, the commission the UN set up to investigate the assassination of Lebanese PM Rafik Hariri, where Nicholson served as chief of investigations, and which ended by accusing Hezbollah and members of the Lebanese and Syrian security and intelligence services.

Now, of course, you can't know people from their CVs - we don't know the inside stories on all these careers. And it also goes without saying that it doesn't matter which individuals you pick if the institutions aren't structured correctly - if it's just these three guys stuck in a supply room with no telephone, they're not going to say anything interesting.

But I've got to say, with what little we know, picking these three guys seems like an impressive declaration of intent. I know Verbruggen is a tough customer, but I don't know if he's tougher than international organ harvesting conspiracies or hezbollah.

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