Monday, May 12, 2008

Monday Roundup

News
The CyclingNews gets hold of the "Landis case cost to WADA story" and at least reports that Landis himself outspent WADA in his own defense. Good thing for WADA that they have to ability to acquire more working capital with the establishment of a "special fund" for cases just such as this, the same cannot likely be said for the athletes vainly attempting to find some "justice" within a system that seems more stacked against them every day. Due process, equal standards for all parties? Apparently WADA is not required to follow such arcane rules.

The Reuters
version of the story is being presented as WADA trying to charge Landis for the $1.3 million they spent on the appeal. The headlines are, as often the case, more inflammatory than the story, which says the usual rules of costs during arbitration will apply:

"The normal process for costs and proceedings will be followed," said Fahey, a former Australian finance minister who took over as WADA chairman from Pound in January.

So there isn't really news there, despite the sensationalism. For the CAS panel to rule that Landis needs to pay costs, it would have to determine the appeal was frivolous and without grounds. We think that is unlikely, as the AAA panel made a number of dubious decisions whose appeal would have to be considered grounded. So WADA is probably going to have to pound salt, or the table on getting any money back. Not that it will matter if Landis goes bust as a consequence of the result anyway.

Bloomberg says the same thing, and tried to get Suh to ballpark Landis' costs, unsuccessfully. It does offer that it has cost Landis at least $1M personally, plus donations, and that bankruptcy is a possibility. We guess the original case and the appeal has run the Landis side $2-$3 million, and a lot of it came from Landis' pocket.

6 comments:

jandeaux said...

PLEASE, EVERYONE, take a look at the WADA budget, balance sheet and other accounting reports available on its website here:

http://www.wada-ama.org/rtecontent/document/2008_Budget_Expenditures.pdf

and here:

http://www.wada-ama.org/rtecontent/document/FS_2006_En.pdf

Their 2008 budget shows almost a million dollars in interest income; their 2006 financial statements, which are the most recent available, show cash on hand of over $22 million! Their total assets are over $30 million.

Would someone please expose this giant slush fund for what it is?

There is no way an athlete can compete with the financial resources of this organization. The fact that FL has taken his case this far is remarkable.

For WADA to plead poverty or hardship in having to litigate any case is a complete joke.

jrdbutcher said...

Thank you jandeaux for the links.

I have just scanned the financial reports (WADA's and their auditor's) and need to read them in more detail.

However, in 2006, the auditor's report indicates WADA has in excess a half million dollars in payables. At least on the surface, it sounds a lot like WADA is very good at raising funding for its bureaucracy, but not in paying its debts. Beware if you do business with WADA. It might be best to get your money up front?

jrdbutcher said...

The notion of holding athletes responsible for the costs of having a case heard and/or appealed to CAS in the event the athlete is not exonerated is ridiculous to the absurd.

It’s been noted that the process most resembles a quasi-criminal proceeding. Assigning costs associated to such proceedings based on a win/lose finding of the defendant is not part of the equation as would be the case in a civil proceeding. Not to mention the stacked deck / kangaroo court nature of the WADA process.

WADA is reaching and posturing.

If they want the benefits of a quasi-civil proceeding they will need to mirror those requirements and responsibilities, much the same as they should have mirrored the requirements and responsibilities of the criminal system, which they did not.

Contact/write your Senators and Congressmen/Congresswomen. Note WADA’s interest income and income vs. expenses available in their financial report and audited report. They don’t need the money and it’s not due them. U.S. citizens don’t need to be contributing to a corrupt system. WADA has provided the ammunition. Interested parties should consider firing back and raising some hell over the issue.

calfeegirl said...

Hey JRD...

Would you be willing to draft a "model" letter to that effect? I really don't have the smarts to draft something that would catch a senator's attention, but would happily add my 2cents to a well-written letter that I could send on to my Congress folks, who include Akaka and Hirono..I believe both are on the committees that govern WADA contributions, etc.

Thank you,
Kate

jrdbutcher said...

Hi Kate,
My letter writing skill are middle of the road, at best. I'll draft a letter and others interested can improve upon it. May take a few days. I'll be out supporting a few Bike Week events.
jrd

("Eightzero") said...

The FFF had boilerplate letterss regarding USADA funding. I used them with some editing and sent a dozen or so out. I got no response from any of my elected representatives.

Does anyone know who represented WADA/USADA vs. FL at the CAS? Suh appearded for Floyd.