As a follow up to the World Anti-Doping Agency’s (WADA’s) intelligence report on IWF in fall 2020, the ITA had received WADA’s case file (“Operation Arrow”) and, after review, decided to assert an anti-doping rule violation (ADRV) for sample swapping against Nijat Rahimov (Kazakhstan). The urine substitution (Article 2.2 of the IWF Anti-Doping Rules) would have occurred over a period of time in 2016, in preparation of the Olympic Games Rio 2016. The case was referred to the CAS ADD and the athlete was provisionally suspended as of 18 January 2021.
A hearing took place before the CAS ADD on 26 August 2021 at which the ITA represented the IWF. After hearing the parties and considering the written submissions and evidence, CAS ADD found that the athlete had committed the ADRV of Use of a Prohibited Method (urine substitution) in accordance with Article 2.2 of the IWF Anti-Doping Rules.
Since this was the athlete’s second ADRV, CAS ADD sanctioned Nijat Rahimov with 8 years of ineligibility. All results obtained by the athlete from 15 March 2016 (date of first evidence of urine substitution) until 18 January 2021 are disqualified and this includes the gold medal obtained at the Olympic Games Rio 2016 (Men’s 77 kg).
The athlete has a right of appeal before the appeal division of CAS.
The ITA will not comment further on this case.