The lengths athletes will go to.... Italian long-distance runner Devis Licciardi accused of using fake penis to beat doping test
A fake penis might be novel but the use of substitute urine isn’t
The lengths to which athletes might go to beat drug controls took on a new dimension this week after an Italian runner was accused of employing a false penis to evade detection during a urine test.
Long-distance runner Devis Licciardi is now being investigated by the country's Olympic committee for allegedly planning to whip out the prosthetic, which was full of drug-free urine, and squirt that in the test bowl instead.
Authorities say that Mr Licciardi, an athlete for the Italian Air Force team, attempted the scam after the Italy's 10km road race at Molfetta, near Bari, last Saturday. La Voce d’Italia website reported that officials caught him “in flagrante” with his plastic accoutrement.
The 27-year-old from Varese has already been summoned to face disciplinary proceedings at Rome's Olympic Stadium, by the disciplinary panel Coni, which announced on its website that the athlete would face his first hearing at noon on Wednesday 25 September.
La Stampa newspaper noted last Friday, on the eve of the Molfetta road race, that Licciardi was one of the runners to keep an eye on following his recent “remarkable” results in the 3,000-metre steeplechase.
The TGcom24 news service reported that he was likely to face an exemplary punishment from Coni — quite probably a lengthy ban — if found guilty.
A fake penis might be novel, but the use of substitute urine isn’t. The Belgian cyclist Michel Pollentier was rumbled after grabbing the yellow jersey during the Tour de France back in 1978. Officials caught him using a condom of different urine held under the armpit that was connected by a plastic tube to give the impression that he was drug-free.
The fake penis scam might be novel, but the use of substitute urine isn’t. The Belgian cyclist Michel Pollentier was rumbled after grabbing the yellow jersey during the Tour de France back in 1978. Officials caught him using a condom of different urine held under the armpit that was connected by a plastic tube to give the impression that he was drug-free.
Chemicals that can be used to dilute banned substances in the blood and urine are easily available online.
And for cheats undeterred by the embarrassing accusations leveled at Mr Licciardi, La Repubblica newspaper has reported that plastic penis kits can be purchased on the internet for €130.
For this, you get not only a fake member in a choice of five skin shades, but also the synthetic urine tank that fits in the anus. It’s not entirely clear, though, how suitable or comfortable this device is for those seeking to compete in the steeplechase like Mr Licciardi or the long jump.
Latest in Sport
Riyad Mahrez to Arsenal: 'No price' is big enough to convince Claudio Ranieri to sell Algerian hotshot
Arsenal transfer news: Arsene Wenger 'optimistic' of making signing, Grzegorz Krychowiak and Edinson Cavani linked
Barbarians vs Samoa interrupted by sprinklers as fans criticise lack of Wi-Fi and poor seating at West Ham's Olympic Stadium
Chelsea 1 Crystal Palace 2: Jose Mourinho uses forward Kenedy at left-back as frustration with Chelsea defence grows
Chelsea 1 Crystal Palace 2: Blues' Twitter account jumps the gun, seconds before Joel Ward goal seals Eagles' victory
- 1 Rules on 5p plastic bags likely to lead to arguments at the check-out
- 2 Hulk Hogan wants to be Donald Trump's running mate in the US Presidential election
Climate change: 2015 will be the hottest year on record 'by a mile', experts say
'Women only' train carriages: Jeremy Corbyn unveils radical move to tackle public harassment
Black holes are a passage to another universe, says Stephen Hawking
Tony Blair attacks Jeremy Corbyn's 'Alice In Wonderland' politics
Theresa May says migrants should be banned from entering the UK unless they have jobs lined up
Iain Duncan Smith 'should resign over disability benefit death figures', says Jeremy Corbyn
£28000 - £37000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...
£22000 - £29000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company's mission is to ma...
£13832 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This 5 star leisure destination on the w...
£20000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Account Manager is requ...