The International Olympic Committee (IOC) on Wednesday stripped two Romanian weightlifting athletes of their medals from the 2012 Olympic Games and disqualified a third over the use of anabolic steroids.
Roxana Cocos, who won silver in the women’s 69kg category and team mate Razvan Martin, a bronze medallist in the men’s category of the same weight tested positive for stanozolol among other substances in re-tests of samples ordered by the IOC.
A third Romanian weightlifter, Gabriel Sincraian, who did not finish in the men’s 85kg weightlifting event at London 2012, was also disqualified after his test came back positive for the same substances.
All athletes now face sanctions by the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF).
The IOC stores and regularly orders re-tests of hundreds of samples from past Olympics in an effort to root out cheats, by using new testing methods not available at the time, or looking for substances that were not known then.
The positive tests are further bad news for the troubled IWF which the IOC has said is at risk of losing its Olympic spot at the 2024 Games in Paris unless it overhauls the federation’s doping programme and its governance.
An independent investigation into the IWF conducted earlier this year by Canadian law professor Richard McLaren found widespread corruption within the organisation, including doping cover-ups with fines paid directly to former president Tamas Ajan.