Report distorted by IOC: McLaren

LONDON • Anti-doping investigation leader Richard McLaren has accused the International Olympic Committee (IOC) of twisting the conclusions of his bombshell report on state-run substance abuse in Russia.

The Canadian lawyer, frustrated at reactions to his work, told The Guardian newspaper that "people have misconstrued what went into that report, particularly the IOC and international federations."

The report issued by McLaren said Russia's sports ministry was helped by the secret service to manipulate Russian samples at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.

The IOC decided against a blanket ban on Russia and IOC president Thomas Bach has said the report, while "serious", contained "allegations" against the Russian government.

"I wouldn't put anything in that report that I didn't have evidence of and wouldn't meet the criminal standard in any court around the world," McLaren said.

The Canadian expert is now working to finish his investigation for the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) and more details are expected in late September.

IOC members are not happy because his report was released just ahead of the Rio Olympics, causing serious doubts about Russia's participation.

But Wada chief Craig Reedie said the interim report had to be published because of the seriousness of the details.

"If you conduct a proper investigation, you don't put the evidence out there to create misinformation," added McLaren, who revealed he has hidden the evidence.

"There is evidence and I have it secured. I haven't turned it over to anyone. I have an ongoing investigation to complete."

McLaren was also part of the Wada-appointed panel led by Dick Pound that investigated Russian athletics. The International Association of Athletics Federations has since suspended Russia.

He said he had not set out to try to incriminate individual athletes.

"I have not done the work to see which athletes may have been doping," McLaren said.

"The report was about state-sponsored doping, manipulation of results, swapping of samples. It's a state-run system. That's what is in the report and people seem to have completely missed that."

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 06, 2016, with the headline 'Report distorted by IOC: McLaren'. Print Edition | Subscribe