By Prof Dr Ian Blackshaw
Fighting doping in sport is an ongoing concern of Sports Governing Bodies, especially the IOC (International Olympic Committee) and WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency).
Doping represents an increasing part of the workload of the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), which is handling around 600 sports-related disputes a year.
It is not surprising, therefore, that the CAS has established a permanent Anti-Doping Division (CAS ADD) to handle doping cases, which came into operation on 1 January 2019.
The CAS ADD will operate at first instance and also on appeal and cases will be referred by Sports Bodies, who are signatories to the WADA Code.
Cases, at first instance, will be heard by a single CAS Arbitrator and, on appeal, by a Panel of three CAS Arbitrators. Twelve Arbitrators, who are experts in anti-doping cases, have been initially appointed to serve on the CAS ADD.
If the parties agree, there will be no further appeal to the CAS Appeal Division, and, in such cases, the CAS ADD proceedings will be free of charge, apart from the usual non-refundable CAS filing fee of 1,000 Sw Frs.
Legal representation will be up to the parties, for which they would have to pay their attorney’s fees, but ‘pro bono’ representation of athletes would be available.
An amended version of the CAS Code of Sports-related Arbitration, incorporating the corresponding procedural rules for the operation of the CAS ADD, has been published and is effective 1 January 2019. For details, see the CAS official website at: ‘www.tas-cas.org’.
The President of the new CAS ADD will be Mr Ivo Eusebio, who is a retired Swiss Federal Judge.
Mr John Coates, the President of ICAS (International Council of Arbitration for Sport), the governing body of CAS, has remarked as follows:
“The establishment of the CAS Anti-Doping Division is a major step in the continuing evolution of CAS. It’s independence as an adjudicatory tribunal ensures a proper separation of powers from the Independent Testing Authority (ITA) and other testing and prosecutorial bodies.”
The establishment of the CAS ADD would appear to be a welcome development in dealing with anti-doping cases fairly and expeditiously.
Prof Dr Ian Blackshaw may be contacted by e-mail at ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’