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Biathlon: Austrian police raid International Biathlon Union headquarters - IBU

13 April 2018

Austrian prosecutors said on Thursday that following their raid on IBU headquarters in Salzburg this week, they were investigating possible doping, fraud and bribery.

"The Austrian Federal Criminal Police executed a property search under warrant, at the International Biathlon Union Headquarters, on Tuesday, the 10th of April, 2018", the IBU said.

Paris - The International Biathlon Union (IBU) said on Thursday that its president was stepping down after raids in Austria and Norway over allegations that officials took bribes to cover up Russian doping.

Details of the investigation remain shrouded in mystery but WADA have confirmed that the issue is linked to doping.

"The search is linked to the investigation focusing on IBU President Anders Besseberg and IBU Secretary General Nicole Resch".

Nicole Resch, the Secretary General of the International Biathlon Union (IBU), chose to resign amid the investigation focusing on her and IBU President Anders Besseberg, the organization said in a press release on Wednesday.

The IBU confirmed that Resch had "requested a leave of absence" following the raid and that executive director Martin Kuchenmeister would serve as acting secretary general.

Norway's National Authority for Investigation and Prosecution of Economic and Environmental Crime (Økokrim) are also providing assistance, according to Norwegian broadcaster NRK. Some of the sport's key names have called for the IBU to take stronger action against Russian Federation, while nations including the United States and Canada boycotted a World Cup round in Russian Federation last month.

Biathlon, which combines skiing and shooting, is one of the most popular winter sports in Europe, but it has been shaken by doping scandals involving the Russian team.

President Anders Besseberg told Reuters he planned to step down pending the outcome of the investigation, which he said was focused on "doping issues".

Several Russian athletes have been sanctioned for doping in recent years, including Olympic medalists from the 2014 Sochi Games, where Russia has been accused of operating a doping scheme and cover-up.

"Dr. Rodchenkov has been cooperating with the investigation of the International Biathlon Union, and with other investigations".

"We are confident that all fraud and corruption related to doping in global sport will be fully disclosed", said Walden.

"Austrian authorities suspect Norwegians of economic crime, and questions about investigations must be addressed to Austrian authorities", the organisation told them in a statement.

"Russia received sensitive information from the IBU", Rodchenkov told NRK this week from a secret location in the USA, where he has sought protection after alleged death threats.

Executive Director Martin Kuchenmeister will serve as the acting secretary general as Resch made a decision to step down, the press release noted, adding the the IBU is taking the situation very seriously.

Biathlon: Austrian police raid International Biathlon Union headquarters - IBU