The explosive revelations detailing the usage of drugs and questionable links to organised crime in <a class="zem_slink" title="Australia" Australian professional and semi-professional sporting codes and competitions, as detailed in the report titled: Organised crime and drugs in sports is a welcome revelation by the Australian Crime Commission (ACC).
Whistle-blowers who have previously advised the ACC of Russian organised crime and Italian mafia links to certain Australian sporting organisations, in addition to wide-spread doping and gambling problems are grateful that the government has investigated and confirmed their claims.
The utilization and proliferation of drugs in professional Australian sport has been a “known, known”, with certain elite and amateur athletes, sports and fitness trainers for well over the past fifteen years.
Those who have operated within the Australian elite sporting arena are happy that finally the truth is starting to emerge about the scale of corruption in sport and the extent of the devastation resulting from the associated links of organised crime, which has become embedded within the Australian sporting sector.
Former ASADA boss, Richard Ings has stated in recent days that the medical, para medical and support staff found to have aided in administrating prohibited substances to elite athletes, which also breaches their duty of care provisions to their athlete patients, will face suspensions of between four years to life.
Mr Ings further commented that elite athletes found guilty of sports doping will face bans of up to two years for their roles in cheating. There are suggestions that ASADA may now upgrade sports doping bans to between four years and life for each athlete caught out cheating the system.
The dark revelations of the insidious corruption within grass-roots to elite Australian sporting bodies is the wake up call that Australians have long needed. Far from tainting just the football codes, the NRL and the AFL, it will soon be publicly revealed that organised crime and sports doping has indeed infected many other high-profile sports and sporting associations.
Systematic tanking and match fixing practices by gambling rings run by criminal entities are also predicted to surface throughout 2013.
The infiltration of organised crime and motor cycle gangs into the Australian fitness industry in recent years is seen as one of the main grass-roots level factors that has influenced the proliferation of steroid and human growth hormone (hgH) abuse in recent years.
Organised crime networks have rapidly overtaken many smaller fitness gyms, hiring their own staff. These “personal trainers” (PT’s) have been observed to on occasions negatively influence their personal training clients to consume steroids, hgH and other substances in a misguided effort to gain rapid lean muscle tissue growth and significant fat loss.
The fact that lean muscle tissue growth, fat loss, increased strength, power and endurance can be gained from a well structured long-term scientific sports conditioning program, in concert with a tailored nutritional and recovery program is a situation not factored into by most amateur and lazy Australian athletes and gym junkies. Most people who employ the services of PT’s and sports coaches are keen to secure quick results that make them appear fit, healthy and toned, with as little effort on their own part as possible.
It has also been noted and partially mentioned by the ACC report that criminal gangs are expanding and acquiring established fitness franchises, by removing existing ethical fitness staff who are well-trained and highly experienced and replacing them with their own inexperienced younger staff. These inexperienced PT’s allegedly promote dubious practices and encourage their fitness clients to consume underground “supplements” and steroids.
One such company that has allegedly removed ethical and well-trained fitness staff and replaced them with younger and less experienced PT’s is Belgravia Health and Leisure Group P/L (BHLG)BHLG manages a significant portion of government-funded contracts to run fitness and leisure centre’s across Australia.
BHLG are often in the media spotlight due to their own controversial decisions and practices, concerning their alleged discrimination against staff, alleged over charging and non release of fitness consumers on dubious membership contracts, in addition to alleged discrimination against fitness consumers who are older, disabled, in addition to people who are injured on their premises.
Fitness industry insiders say that it is extraordinary that the Gillard government continues to support and hand out lucrative tax payer funded contracts to allegedly controversial and corrupt companies such as BHLG. Ms Gillard’s former insiders
suggest this lack of judgement is typical of her poor decision-making abilities.
Insiders also claim that there are so many instances where alleged political interference has favored BHLG in recent years, in matters concerning covering up alleged corruption and breach of separation of powers in legal cases. In addition to discrimination and negligence claims against BHLG being swept under the carpet, that a wide body of people are really starting to question whether certain senior Labor party MP’s such as Bill Shorten and Nicola Roxon have also allegedly been corrupted by criminal entities.
We contacted the Australian fitness governing body, Fitness Australia about the problems concerning organised crimes infiltration into the fitness industry and the expanding promotion of steroids, hgH and other dubious products to fitness consumers in 2010 and asked them what their strategy was to stamp out the corruption. They replied that their focus and resources was directed on growing and promoting their brand and that the alleged problems of corruption that resided within the fitness industry were the responsibility of individual fitness gyms and franchises.
Additionally we have been advised that the Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO) is aware of these serious issues pertaining to organised crime’s links into the Australian fitness industry and the associated black listing of individual’s who call out dubious operators. A senior executive has claimed that FWO are monitoring the situation.
Consumers of the fitness industry mistakenly believe that such corrupt practices are regulated by government or industry entities however this is not the case. Such gaps in the regulatory framework of the Australian fitness industry have allowed organised crime to infiltrate, disrupt and infect significant sections of the Australian grass-roots sporting landscape.
Whistle-blowers have confirmed that sports doping has been rife within many Australian sports for well over a decade. This is particularly the case with Australian female elite and amateur athletes.
Sports doping by female athletes has been an unspoken subject for too long now. One of the major causal factors that led to the revelation of corruption in sport to the ACC, was in fact due to the alleged drug cheating practices by certain Australian female athletes and their associated criminal protection rackets.
Whistle-blowers claim that they contacted the ACC as they were disgusted about having to continuously compete against obviously doped up female athletes. They also mention these alleged drug cheats were more athletic and physically stronger than their male counterparts. When female athletes easily beat males and look more masculine in their physique than many other men, you know something is seriously amiss.
The practice of doping in Australian woman’s sport is known to also have operated at the grass-roots levels. It has been disclosed that children as young as 13 years old are known to have asked their coaches and fitness trainers for assistance to acquire steroids. In a misguided attempt to win their competitions, secure sponsorships and gain selection into the <a class="zem_slink" title="Australian Institute of Sport" Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) and other high performance sporting programs.
It has been noted that junior athletes do not get tested for potential drug abuse until they are at least 18 years old and / or are competing in professional level competitions.
Impressionable sporting youth appear not to listen to their sports coaches and trainers warnings of the dangers in taking steroids. Their parents are equally as guilty in their children’s attempts to cheat in sport, by their willingness to financially fund the procurement of the steroids. Drug abusing youth and their parents additionally act on the advice that questionable consultants give when detailing how to successfully bulk up, gain strength and competitive advantages over other athletes.
Moreover the side effects of steroid and human growth hormone (hgH) abuse are many. With whistle-blowers claiming that doping female athletes became unbearable to associate with due to their extreme mood swings and their aggressive and abusive bullying behavior, directed towards their fellow female competitors.
Furthermore observers of alleged Australian female athlete drug cheats have complained that their fellow “cheating” team mates have over stepped the line when they allegedly engaged in sexual relations with most of their male team mates, club presidents, sports and fitness coaches, further entrenching their immovable position within their sporting profession.
These insiders claim that their female drug cheating comrades have also had sexual relations with sponsors and media managers. In return they were allegedly given regular media sporting commentary columns, in addition to financial and lucrative sports clothing and equipment sponsorship’s.
It can also be revealed that some whistle-blowers have received extraordinary retribution by their fellow doping athletes and sporting bodies for their roles in previously revealing corruption in sport to various government agencies.
This retribution has ranged from malicious defamation of their reputations, their person being dropped from sporting teams, to black listing by senior administrators and club coaches in their chosen sports.
Other athletes have detailed beatings, torture and job losses that have resulted from their previous efforts at speaking out against drug taking and organised crime involvement in their sports. All whistle-blowers have supplied evidence to verify their claims.
Whistle-blowers state that they are no longer going to remain silent about the corruption that has been operating within the Australian sporting arena. They claim they will gladly blow the whistle on sports administrators, drug cheats and organised crime figures who have helped taint and corrupt their sport.
Insiders say that when drug cheats not only unfairly take home the winners trophy’s for most events, at almost every competition, in addition to all the lucrative contacts, sponsorship deals, international publicity and media glory, in full support of dodgy senior managers, then they know its time to leave their sport.
Most athletes at both the grass-roots and elite levels who are aware of sports doping in Australia, retire in disgust at the misinformation that is fed to the public and repeated by the government about Australian sporting arena maintaining fairness and integrity.
Most former elite and amateur Australian athletes that have had their sporting careers curtailed by drug cheats and systematic corruption in several Australian sporting bodies are today rejoicing, that finally that are going to receive justice and hold all their fellow competitor drug cheats and support administrators to account for robbing them an equal playing field and their own potential success.
Link to the Australian Crime Commissions (ACC) Organised Crime and Drugs in Sport Report: http://www.crimecommission.gov.au/publications/other/organised-crime-drugs-sport
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