Illegal Doping: When a Doctor or Athlete is Accused of Juicing

Posted on July 31, 2013 in: Criminal Defense

The use of banned performance-enhancing drugs – otherwise known as doping or juicing – is a hot topic in professional sports. Recent news events in South Florida have highlighted the potential consequences of using and selling banned substances such as anabolic steroids and other popular drugs. On related topic, if your looking for legal help for accident or injury related case checkout this Germantown Personal Injury lawyer for more information.

Athletes accused of doping – taking banned substances – often face professional penalties. In some cases, the athlete may also face legal penalties.  Likewise, a doctor, trainer, or clinic owner accused of illegally selling or otherwise supplying substances may face federal and state criminal charges. Those in this situation will likely experience negative professional consequences, such as a loss of income or reputation.

An Overview of Banned Substances

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Providing or ingesting these substances without proper prescription may be considered unethical and/or illegal, depending on the circumstances. A number of professional athletic organizations (including the Olympics and most professional sports leagues) ban the use of performance-enhancing drugs. 

The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency regularly updates its list of banned substances, which includes items like: 

  • anabolic steroids;
  • human growth hormones; and
  • masking agents.

Athletes who test positive for such substances typically face penalties, including banishment from events and loss of titles.

An Overview of Recent Doping Controversies

Lance Armstrong is one of the high-profile professional athletes to face doping charges. In October 2012, he was stripped of his Tour de France titles for his past use of performance-enhancing drugs.

South Florida has made headlines in 2013 as a destination for professional athletes allegedly in search of easy-to-procure performance enhancers like steroids and human growth hormone. A Coral Gables doctor, Dr. Pedro Bosch, and his son, Anthony Bosch, have been targeted by federal anti-doping investigations. The Boschs’ clinic has been implicated in a large-scale doping controversy involving numerous Major League Baseball players.

When a Doctor or Clinic Owner is Accused of Selling Banned Drugs

Doctors and other medical professionals accused of illegally supplying controlled substances may face federal criminal charges and penalties that include fines and possible jail time. However, Florida’s laws on medical clinics do allow for the sale of many so-called performance-enhancing substances.

This legal grey area complicates matters for those who are accused of supplying banned substances. It also leaves some room for a defense. This is especially true for medical providers who prescribe such substances in a medically-appropriate context.

When an Athlete is Accused of Using Banned Drugs 

Athletes accused of procuring or ingesting banned drugs may face penalties from both law enforcement and supervising athletic associations. It is worth noting that many banned substances can be found in so-called nutritional supplements and in other innocuous forms.

In some circumstances, an injured or ailing athlete may be unaware that a doctor or clinician is inappropriately prescribing or dispensing banned substances. These conditions may cause an athlete to inadvertently commit a violation of federal laws and industry standards.

If you have been accused of using, selling, or illegally prescribing banned drugs or performance-enhancing substances, you may benefit from contacting a defense attorney. Call 877-663-5110.

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