An important and far-reaching meeting in Helsinki, Finland, this week brought together 26 investigators and analysts who are on the front line of anti-doping intelligence gathering around the world.
Hosted by the Finnish Centre for Integrity in Sports (FINCIS), that country’s National Anti-Doping Organisation (NADO), the meeting brought together representatives from 11 NADOs, two International Federations as well as representatives from Interpol and the World Anti-Doping Agency’s (WADA's) Intelligence and Investigations (I&I) Department. They heard presentations on latest I&I innovations as well as reviewed a draft version of the Anti-Doping Intelligence and Investigations Network (ADIIN) management plan, which will be presented to WADA’s Executive Committee and Foundation Board in May.
WADA Director, I&I, Gunter Younger, who presented at the meeting, said: “This meeting is about equipping Anti-Doping Organisations (ADOs) around the world with the tools necessary to launch their own investigations. Lessons learned from the results of WADA’s independent Pound Commission and McLaren Investigation into Russian doping show that it is more effective and efficient for ADOs to carry out their own investigations rather than relying on externally mandated operations.
“WADA’s I&I Department has identified investigators and analysts within ADOs who have the required skills and experience and are ready to join the ADIIN. This network is a secure environment where participants can share experiences, expertise, international best practice and operational data in a confidential way.
“With the ultimate goal of protecting clean athletes around the world, it is in everyone’s best interest to build this network of trusted and experienced investigators and analysts. ADIIN members are often the first port of call for us when we launch an investigation and need support and additional intelligence.”
FINCIS Chief Investigative Officer Jouko Ikonen said: “Investigative methods are a key part of FINCIS's strategic choices. It is important that we work together with these top international experts. Therefore, it was our honour to host the meeting in Helsinki.”