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Figure Skater’s Positive Test Puts PEDs in the Spotlight

Going into the 2022 Winter Olympics, Russian figure skater Kamila Valieva was the odds-on favorite to win the gold medal. Not only did she not win the individual gold, but she also lost the respect of many in the skating community when a blood sample came back positive for performance-enhancing drugs.

The 15-year-old’s fall from grace has many in the athletic world debating how she was treated, whether she should have been allowed to continue in the competition, and whether what was in her blood really helped her in any way. She’s denied any wrongdoing, saying she perhaps drank water cross-contaminated with her grandfather’s heart medication – one of the banned substances in question.

You do not have to be an Olympic athlete to face allegations of illegal doping. At Collins Gann McCloskey & Barry PLLC, we concentrate our efforts on defending anabolic steroid and PED clients in the bodybuilding and fitness communities from coast to coast.

Olympic Dreams Dashed

Valieva’s positive blood sample was taken in December 2021, but the results did not become known until after the Olympics were well underway.

The skater tested positive for three heart-helping drugs, one of which is banned:

  • Hypoxen
  • L-Carnitine
  • Trimetazidine (banned)

Trimetazidine (TMZ) is used to treat heart conditions like angina by improving flood flow to the heart. The drug is approved for angina therapy in Europe but not in the United States. The World Anti-Doping Agency has banned the use of the drug in all sports since 2014.

The skater had listed the first two on her doping control form. Some say the trio of drugs was aimed at increasing endurance, reducing fatigue, and improving oxygen utilization. Others point out that TMZ’s side effects – dizziness, nausea, hives, and more – could outweigh any potential benefit.

What Athletes in Gyms Across America Should Know

We do not represent Kamila Valieva, and we don’t know what really happened. We have empathy for a young athlete with so much promise that is now in question.

American athletes regularly take supplements to improve their athletic performance. Protein powders, amino acids, caffeine, and creatine are among the substances that are helpful but are not illegal. Banned, illegal substances included anabolic-androgenic steroids (AAS), AAS prohormones, human growth hormone, and stimulants like Ritalin and Adderall.

Bodybuilders, gymnasts, sprinters, boxers, and other athletes must be careful about what they ingest and always know what someone else gives them.

Consequences of Doping or Steroid Crimes

There are several ways in which someone can find themselves needing a defense attorney. Maybe you allegedly had a banned substance that was found in your car during a traffic stop. Maybe you attempted to place an order over the internet.

The federal Anabolic Steroid Act of 2004 amended the 1990 law to redefine anabolic steroid “to mean any drug or hormonal substance, chemically and pharmacologically related to testosterone (other than estrogens, progestins, corticosteroids, and dehydroepiandrosterone).”

Drug laws vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, but consequences can be serious. Federal law classifies anabolic steroids as Schedule III controlled substances. New York categorizes anabolic steroids as Class II controlled substances.

Experience in Steroid Defense Matters

If you or a loved one has been banned, arrested, or charged with the use of steroids, you need an experienced attorney who will fight to protect your rights. Do not put your future in the hands of an attorney without specific knowledge of steroid law. The Collins Gann McCloskey & Barry PLLC criminal defense team can provide an aggressive and proactive defense to every client we represent.

To speak to one of our attorneys in a free consultation, call (516) 218-5131 or submit this online form.