Italian athletics coach charged in Kenya with doping

Tue Aug 2, 2016 10:55am EDT
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NAIROBI (Reuters) - Italian athletics coach Claudio Berardelli was charged in a Kenyan court on Tuesday over the alleged administration of a prohibited performance enhancing substance to a Kenyan marathon champion.

Berardelli, who was arrested with fellow Italian sports coach Federico Rosa last month, denied the charges and was freed on bail. Rosa has also denied the charges.

Berardelli is accused of administering EPO, a prohibited substance, to Rita Jeptoo, in 2014. He was charged with two Kenyans, who were also freed on bail.

Jeptoo was suspended for two years in October 2014 after failing an out-of-competition test for the banned blood-booster, becoming the most high-profile positive test from Kenya.

Her case is being dealt with at the Court of Arbitration for Sport. The runner, who won back-to-back Boston and Chicago titles in 2013 and 2014 plus the Boston event in 2006, has denied doping.

The East African nation, renowned for its distance runners, has faced frequent allegations of doping, with some 40 cases reported in the past year.

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta signed an anti-doping amendment bill into law in June after the World Anti-Doping Agency said Kenyan legislation passed in April needed further changes to comply with WADA's code.

(Reporting by Humprey Malalo; Writing by Duncan Miriri; Editing by Alison Williams)

Italian sports agent Federico Rosa stands in the dock over the alleged use of performance-enhancing drugs by athletes his company managed, at the Kibera Law Courts outside the Nairobi, Kenya, July 6, 2016. REUTERS/Gregory Olando