CAS 2003/A/447 Anna Stylianou v/ FINA
On 29 August 2002 the Cyprus Amateur Swimming Association decided to impose a 1 year period of ineligibility on the minor Cypriot swimmer Anna Stylianou (16) after her sample tested positive for the prohibited substance 19-norandrosterone (Nandrolone).
After deliberations the case was referered to the International Swimming Federation (FINA) and 19 February 2003 the FINA Doping Panel decided to impose a 4 year period of ineligibility on the Athlete.
Hereafter the Athlete appealed the FINA decision with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).
The Athlete requested the Panel for a reduced sanction and argued that the FINA decision of 19 February 2003 is bases on a misinterpretation of the FINA Doping Rules. Also the Athlete asserted that the FINA decision is neither substantiated nor clear. She admitted the violation and denied the intentional use of the prohibited substance.
The Athlete explained that she had purchased and used three supplements recommended by her coach and she and her doctor checked the labels of these products before using. Analysis of two supplements revealed no prohibited substance. Analyisis of the third supplement Inosine was not possible due she had used all capsules, the supplement was not available anymore in Cyprus and it was withdrawn from the market. She concluded that these capsules were the source of the positive test.
FINA contended that the Athlete committed the anti-doping rule violation, she acted with negligence and failed to establish that the supplement Inosine was the source of the positive test. In accordance with the new FINA Doping Control Rules FINA accepted to apply in favor of the Athlete and to reduce the sanction from 4 years to a 2 year period of ineligibility.
The Panel holds that Athlete accepted the test results and that a 2 year period of ineligibility is the appropriate sanction in this case. The Panel finds that FINA failed to show cause as to why the Athlete bears No Significant Fault or Negligence. There are no exceptional circumstances in this case, the Athlete acted negligently with her supplements and she failed to establish how the substance entered her system.
The Panel considers that the reduction of the sanction by 2 years is a de jure consequence of the adoption of the Amended Code by FINA. Therefore, the Appellant did not obtain the reduction of her ineligibility by reason of her pleadings.
Therefore the Court of Arbitration for Sport decides on 30 January 2004 that:
1.) The appeal filed by the Athlete on March 17, 2003 is partially upheld.
2.) The decision of FINA dated February 19, 2003 is hereby amended:
- a) A term of ineligibility of two years is imposed on the Athlete, commencing as of June 16, 2002.
- b) All results achieved by the Athlete during the period from June 16, 2002 until July 2, 2002 shall be deemed cancelled.
3.) This award is rendered without costs, except for the Court Office fee of CHF 500.00 (Five Hundred Swiss Francs) already paid by the Appellant, which shall be retained by the CAS.
4.) Each party shall bear its own respective costs.