Italian manager Federico acquitted of doping charges


Federico leaves Kibera Law Courts on Tuesday following his acquittal. PHOTO/CHARITY WANJA
Federico leaves Kibera Law Courts on Tuesday following his acquittal. PHOTO/CHARITY WANJA

Italian manager and Athletes’ Representative Federico Rosa was set free after the State withdrew doping charges levelled against him on Tuesday.

The case was withdrawn under Section 87A of the Criminal Procedure Code with the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) saying no further investigations are set to be conducted on doping claims against the Rosa Associati Director.

“The accused is hereby discharged and the security documents to be returned to the depositors and sureties discharged. The cash bail to be refunded to the depositor. The accused’s  passport to be returned to him,” Kibera Law Courts Principal Magistrate Bernard Ochoi read.

Federico who had been out on a Ksh500,000 (USD5000) bail quickly left the courts moments after he was set free following the end of the ordeal that has placed him under duress that started on July 1 when officers ransacked his hotel room as he came to attend the Kenyan Trials for Rio 2016 Olympics.

“I’m very happy and relaxed now. Going through everything I was very stressed because I was put under pressure for no reason. It’s a very nice day for me because now I go back to my normal life without any restrictions and then slowly back to work. The Italian embassy was very helpful; they have been close to me and the ambassador has been keeping in touch with the DPP but more support has come from my lawyers and athletes.

“They tried to stop me from everywhere but they didn’t succeed so definitely I’ll keep doing my job and develop athletes and enjoy country. I’ll need some time to recover from this but I’m certain I will still be here,” Federico told Citizen Digital following his acquittal.

Reacting to the news, Beijing 2008 Olympics and three-time world men 1500m champion, Asbel Kiprop who is one among Federico’s stellar cast clients said he felt sorry that the 74-year-old had to be put through trial when, according to him, he has all along been innocent.

“Grateful to God. I pray that his accusers will one day find in their hearts to confess what was their intention. I’m sorry I said the manager was innocent. But no one could hear me,” he stated.

Federico who is the son of Rosa Associati founder and veteran manager, Dr. Gabrielle Rosa, faced six counts of charges related to doping and ruining the reputations of two Kenyan athletes.

He was accused of conspiring with others to injure the reputations of Elijah Kiprono and Rita Jeptoo by administering prohibited substances.

Federico was held for questioning alongside his father and Rosa Associati founder Gabrielle Rosa who was not charged as well as their former employee and fellow Italian Coach Claudio Berardelli, over the alleged use of prohibited performance enhancing substances on the two athletes.

He was the former manager of Jeptoo – a three-time winner of the Boston Marathon and a two-time winner in Chicago – banned by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) for using performance-enhancing drugs.

In their judgement, the CAS panel ruled that Jeptoo, 35, who had become the poster girl of Kenya’s doping scourge deliberately, used the banned blood booster to cheat her way to victory having acted outside the knowledge of her then coach, Italian Claudio Berardelli and his compatriot and former manager, Federico.

Rosa run three training camps in Eldoret, Kaptagat and Kapsabet that has been the home of a slew of champion runners in Kenya’s glittering athletics history.

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Story By Charity Wanja
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