Sunday, April 3, 2016 8:51 am
A British doctor has made a sensational claim that he prescribed performance-enhancing drugs to 150 athletes, including British Tour de France cyclists, an English cricket player, premier league footballers playing for Arsenal, Chelsea, Leicester and others.
Dr Mark Bonar, who runs a private clinic in London made the claim in a report published today in London’s Sunday Times.
Bonar was secretly recorded by Times Undercover reporters.
The 38 year-old doctor reportedly treated the athletes over the past six years, prescribing EPO, testosterone, steroids and human growth hormone at a private London clinic.
“The fact that some of my patients happen to be professional athletes is irrelevant. If they have the proven deficiencies on blood work and are symptomatic, I will treat them,” Bonar was reported as saying.
“They are fully aware of the risks of using these medicines in professional sport and it is their responsibility to comply with anti-doping regulations.
“I do not ‘dope’ or treat patients for the sole purpose of performance enhancement even though the these treatments may enhance performance as a secondary effect.”
Both Arsenal and Chelsea have denied the claims their players were involved in the use of performance enhancing drugs.
The clubs were named among other English sides amid claims from Dr Mark Bonar that he had aided a series of athletes, including Premier League footballers.
Both Arsenal and Chelsea have released statements slamming the reports, which also alleged Leicester and Birmingham were on Dr Bonar’s list of former clients.
Arsenal said: “Arsenal Football Club is extremely disappointed by the publication of these false claims which are without foundation. The Sunday Times knows that these allegations are baseless but has preferred to publish regardless. The club takes its responsibilities in this area very seriously and our players are well aware of what is expected. We strictly adhere to all guidelines set by the World Anti-Doping Agency.”
Chelsea said: “The claims The Sunday Times put to us are false and entirely without foundation. Chelsea Football Club has never used the services of Dr Bonar and has no knowledge or record of any of our players having been treated by him or using his services.
“We take the issue of performance enhancing drugs in sport extremely seriously and comply fully with all anti-doping rules and regulations. Chelsea FC players are regularly and rigorously tested by the relevant authorities.”
The Sunday Times also alleges that United Kingdom’s anti-doping (UKAD) was told of Bonar’s activities two year’s ago and failed to act. As a result of the report, UK culture secretary, John Whittingdale has ordered an inquiry into the anti-doping watchdog.
The Sunday Times’ report added: “Despite Bonar’s claims, The Sunday Times has no independent evidence Bonar treated the players.”
According to BBC, Bonar has denied any wrongdoing and Sunday Times also says all the stars he named have either denied ever being treated by him or made no comment.