Canadian doctor, pharmacist face probes after sports-doping video

Wed Jan 6, 2016 9:05pm EST
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By Nicole Mordant

VANCOUVER (Reuters) - A Canadian doctor and pharmacist face inquiries by health authorities over allegations made by a December television documentary that they obtained banned performance-enhancing drugs for athletes, officials said on Wednesday.

The two men appeared in a Dec. 27 investigative report by Al Jazeera network that linked well-known players from the National Football League, such as Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning, and Major League Baseball (MLB) with banned substances.

The documentary has been controversial and several athletes, including Manning, swiftly denied any wrongdoing.

The College of Naturopathic Physicians of British Columbia said on Wednesday it is investigating Vancouver-based naturopath Brandon Spletzer, who could lose his right to practice.

Spletzer is also licensed in the U.S. state of Washington, and the Washington Department of Health said it was in the first stage of a potential investigation that is due to last 21 days.

Canadian pharmacist Chad Robertson is the target of a "pre-investigation" by the College of Pharmacists of British Columbia that will determine if an investigation is warranted, spokeswoman Gillian Vrooman said. She said this phase, which started this week, typically takes three to four weeks.

In the documentary, Spletzer was shown providing an undercover reporter posing as an athlete with an array of pill bottles and explaining how he could delete medical records if, for example, the World Anti-Doping Agency investigated. Naturopaths in British Columbia are allowed to prescribe drugs.

"The college can confirm that there is an investigation related to the recent Al Jazeera report," College of Naturopathic Physicians of British Columbia registrar Howard Greenstein said in a statement.   Continued...