UPDATE 1-Doping-Former RusAF officials banned for four years in Lysenko case

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Feb 17 (Reuters) - Five former Russian Athletics Federation (RusAF) officials, including former RusAF president Dmitry Shlyakhtin, have been banned for four years after a disciplinary tribunal upheld all charges against them in the investigation into high jumper Danil Lysenko, the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) said on Wednesday.

The AIU said former RusAF board member Artur Karamyan was also guilty of tampering, complicity, failing to report an Anti-Doping Rule Violation (ADRV) and failing to co-operate with the AIU investigation.

Lysenko, who won silver in the high jump at the 2017 world championships, failed to file his whereabouts on three occasions and was provisionally suspended in 2018 as three strikes in a 12-month period constituted an ADRV.

In 2019, the AIU concluded that federation officials had provided “false explanations and forged documents” to the AIU to explain Lysenko’s whereabouts failures.

“These are offences of the utmost seriousness committed by persons right at the top of RusAF, a World Athletics Federation. It appears that most if not all of the senior management of RusAF were involved in this major fraud,” the tribunal said.

“This is quite shocking. Mr Shlyakhtin and Mr Karamyan, as senior individuals... must bear great responsibility of what happened. In the panel’s view, a sanction of four years can be described as grossly inadequate on the facts of this case.

“If for any reason the panel was wrong on the tampering charge, it would impose the maximum four-year penalty for complicity.”

Shlyakhtin did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The other three officials named are former executive director Alexander Parkin, Elena Orlova (senior administrator)and Elena Ikonnikova (anti-doping coordinator).

The AIU said Parkin, Orlova and Ikonnikova did not contest the charges.

Last year, Ikonnikova and Orlova were banned for eight years and six years respectively for obstructing the investigation after they failed to provide their mobile phones and electronic storage devices for inspection.

The AIU said the cases against Lysenko and his coach Evgeniy Zagorulko are still in progress. (Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru and Gabrielle Tétrault-Farber in Moscow; Editing by Alison Williams)