Former cross-country ski coach Mati Alaver was found guilty of inducing persons to use doping in agreement process. Alaver (65) does not admit wrongdoing.
According to the plea bargain between Alaver and the Public Prosecutor's Office, he will be handed a suspended sentence of one year with a probationary period of 18 months. Alaver must also pay €810 in procedure expenses.
Alaver refused to comment when leaving the courthouse. "I hope the media understands Mati Alaver does not wish to publicly comment on the details of the agreement," said his legal counsel Aivar Pilv. "Public attention has been very intense. I hope this right to privacy will be honored to some degree."
The ruling can be appealed inside 15 days, while Pilv said they are not planning on it. "We do not see any reason," the attorney said. "We have agreed to the deal on these conditions."
Asked whether Alaver has expressed regret, Pilv said: "Such a case is always very difficult and unpleasant for a person; no one is gladdened by it."
Does Alaver admit guilt? "Agreement process does not require a person to plead guilty, a deal can be made irrespective of whether they do. Mati Alaver has not confirmed or acknowledged his guilt. I will not comment on it further as it concerns the bargain," Pilv said.
Investigations into the doping scandal continue in Austria and Germany, while Pilv couldn't say whether Alaver will have to appear in court there. "I cannot speak for Austrian or German authorities in this matter," he said. "Double punishment is not allowed. However, different countries might have different elements of a criminal offense. Estonia only has section 195 of the Penal Code that concerns inducing persons to use doping. But I do not have any more information, which is why I cannot say anything further regarding proceedings in Austria of Germany."
Editor: Marcus Turovski