Doctor in Park Tae Hwan Drug Scandal Case Indicted

kpopluv, Feb. 9, 2015, 10:10 a.m.


The Seoul Central District Prosecutors' Office on Friday indicted the doctor who allegedly injected star swimmer Park Tae-hwan with testosterone.  The doctor, surnamed Kim (46) is charged with negligence for failing to explain what the injections of Nebido, chiefly an erectile dysfunction treatment, contained. 

While training for the 2014 Asian Games in Incheon, Park had at least one injection of the drug on July 29.  He underwent a doping test on Sept. 3 and was notified by the World Anti-Doping Agency at the end of October that he failed the test. 

On Jan. 20, 2015, Park filed a lawsuit against Kim on charges of bodily harm.  Prosecutors argue that neither Park nor Kim knew that Nebido contained a banned substance but decided to indict the doctor because it would have been his responsibility to make sure. A welter of questions surrounding the case will be dealt with in court. 

Prosecutors argue that neither Park nor Kim knew that Nebido contained a banned substance but decided to indict the doctor because it would have been his responsibility to make sure. A welter of questions surrounding the case will be dealt with in court. 

Park has been one of the world's top swimmers in middle-distance freestyle for almost a decade. His impressive career includes one Olympic gold and three silver medals.  Among athletes who get mandatory anti-doping education and are regularly tested, testosterone is perhaps the best-known prohibited substance. 



Prosecutors are suspicious of Kim's claim that he gave the swimmer a shot at his anti-aging clinic because Park had such low levels of the male hormone. If it is true that Park was prescribed hormone injections for treatment, and he notified the Korea Swimming Federation and FINA, the international swimming governing body in advance, he could have avoided disciplinary action. 

Nebido is used to treat symptoms of male menopause and also contains a steroid that strengthens muscles.  Prosecutors believe that Park was the only athlete being treated at the clinic.  Park is unlikely to avoid serious disciplinary action at the FINA hearing in Switzerland on Feb. 27 based on the prosecutors' findings, since there is no evidence that he took all possible care to avoid doping. 

The World Anti-Doping Code (WADC) stipulates, "It is each athlete's personal duty to ensure that no prohibited substance enters his or her body. Athletes are responsible for any prohibited substance or its metabolites or markers found to be present in their samples." 

The only scenario where he can avoid censure is when "an athlete could prove that, despite all due care, he or she was sabotaged by a competitor." 

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