MONTREAL: The World Anti-Doping Agency has welcomed the guilty verdict and jail term from a court in Norway against Anders Besseberg, the former president of the International Biathlon Union.

Besseberg had been convicted over criminal corruption charges related to accepting bribes and other inducements, and favouring Russia while he was head of the IBU. He was sentenced to three years and one month in prison.

A WADA statement said:

WADA initiated an investigation into this matter in November 2016 through its independent Intelligence and Investigations (I&I) Department. Information collected at that stage gave the criminal investigation its initial impetus and WADA investigators were in close communication with law enforcement authorities in Austria and Norway, as well as INTERPOL.

This is another success for WADA I&I and its policy of collaboration with law enforcement and other stakeholders that are committed to doping-free sport. It shows once again that WADA will always act to do what is right for clean sport. Today’s verdict should be seen as a warning to other administrators who threaten the integrity of sport. WADA commends the diligence of the Austrian and Norwegian law enforcement, as well as the prosecutors who brought the case to court, in using WADA’s information and taking it further for the protection of clean sport.

As with many WADA I&I investigations, this case was originally triggered by intelligence provided by a confidential source. WADA encourages anyone with information who wishes to help maintain the integrity of sport, to come forward in complete confidence via WADA’s whistleblower platform ‘Speak Up!’