Doping Scandal Aimed at Drawing Focus From EOC Finances, Says Accused Accomplice
A businessman accused of aiding top athletes with illegal doping has pointed the finger at the head of the Estonian Olympic Committee, Neinar Seli, saying that the scandal broke to divert attention from mismanagement of the organization's financial affairs.
Speaking to ETV on Saturday, businessman Margus Kübar said that Seli, who was recently reelected to lead the EOC, has failed to uphold his election promises, adding that he masterminded the scandal to draw attention from the increased, but unfilled, financial expectations of sporting federations.
Seli said that the claim is absurd, and that it is Kübar who is trying to divert media attention, adding that he does not even know Vitali Bernatski, the doctor who admitted to administering the drugs.
Bernatski told Eesti Päevaleht in mid-December that he supplied banned substance EPO to athletes ranging from sportsmen to amateurs between 1995 and 2007.
The Anti-Doping Agency has opened an investigation based on Bernatski's testimony and materials handed over by him. A list of the alleged offenders has also been handed to the agency, but has not been made public.
The daily revealed that former olympic cross-country skier Raul Olle had made a transfer of 670 euros to the doctor in 2002. Olle initially said that he does not recall what the money was intended for, but later said that it could have been a personal loan.