The cyclist's defense knows that it is not easy. However, he considers that there are violated rights.

The cyclist's defense knows that it is not easy. However, he considers that there are violated rights.

Boyacense cyclist Nairo Quintana (Arkea Samsic) surprised this Thursday morning by resigning from the 77th edition of the Return to “assert” their reasons before the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).

His announcement was made after this Wednesday the International Cycling Union (UCI) disqualified him from the 2022 Tour de France, in which he was in sixth place, for “infringing the prohibition on the use of tramadol” in competition.

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“I don't have a head, my body isn't there to compete. I had said I was going to do the Vuelta a España, but no”, Quintana said in a video shared through his press office.

“I'm not in a position and I prefer to return home to organize and prepare my defenseabout the notification that came to me and show that I have no problem,” he added.

Now, with his mind focused on his defense, Quintana is getting ready to climb a mountain that very few reach the top: the TAS.

In dialogue with EL TIEMPO, the lawyer Andrés Charria, who at the time of writing this article was the main option to take on Nairo's case, revealed what could be the lines of defense of the winning rider of the Vuelta de España in 2016.

Nairo Quintana's defense

The cyclist's defense knows that it is not easy. However, it considers that there are violated rights.

“There are many defenses”, Charria explained in the conversation with this newspaper.

In his list of arguments, the initial one is taking the sample.

1. The taking of the sample

“The taking is a finger prick and they leave it on a piece of paper. Where was the paper? Was the paper sealed? Where did the paper go?”, that's the first thing. It's a very rare sample “, she said.

“The test was taken with the University of Geneva laboratory. Why didn't they use one from the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA)? It's not doping, of course, but why in the Tour de France Don't you work with a certified laboratory?” he added.

2. The ambiguity of the regulation

Then, given the lack of clarity of the medical regulations of the International Cycling Union, Charria affirms that the text itself says: “This code is not mandatory, it is a suggestion.”

So, from the outset, there are many issues you have to watch with that.

“If the spirit of the rule seeks to preserve the integrity of the lot, because if someone consumes weft and falls asleep, he and fifty other cyclists could fall, why Why do they notify you after the Tour is over?“, added the lawyer, remembered for cases such as the María Luisa Calle medal, at the 2004 Athens Olympics.

3. Due process

Then, about what perhaps most draws attention to the player's environment, which is the apparent lack of due process, Charria declared:

“In any sanction, the minimum is that they call him to release him. They have not spoken to Nairo. They did not ask him for explanations. They notified him and that's it. Where is the due process?

“Nairo has not been allowed to see anything. Everything is to sanction. They are not protecting the athlete because there is no due process. Therefore, it seems to me that they are going too far. The only right that an athlete usually has is the opening of the sample B, a countersample, as in doping cases. It is an arbitrary system, which does not follow the minimum fundamental rights of a person”, he pointed out.

4. Absence of other cases due to tramadol

As can be seen in the information from the International Cycling Union, there have been no cases of tramadol, such as that of Nairo.

Cycling is the only sport in which tramal is prohibited. There is no fraud sanction,” the lawyer commented.

“I don't think there was a fraud in Nairo's case. And if there was, the whole procedure is still down,” he added.

5. 'Presumption of guilt'

Bearing in mind that the Court of Arbitration for Sport is the last instance for this type of case, Charria explains that it is difficult to win “because there is a presumption of guilt.” Even so, it is not impossible.

“The first instance was stolen because they already sanctioned him. Nairo could not defend himself. There was no right of defense. Even when it comes out positive for tramadol, you have to pay for the laboratory tests that were done to determine the positive,” he added.

“The lines of defense are clear. Of course, it is legally impossible to prove a negative fact. It is impossible for Nairo to prove that he did not consume the substance,” he concluded.

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