Decision: Rugby Football Union v Joseph Stokes

Decision: Rugby Football Union v Joseph Stokes

A decision in the case of the Rugby Football Union (RFU) v Joseph Stokes has been issued by the National Anti-Doping Panel (NADP).

On 11 March 2017, rugby union player Joseph Stokes was subject to an In-Competition test at a match between Matson RFC and Clevedon RFC. Analysis of Mr Stokes’ urine sample returned an Adverse Analytical Finding for Benzolecgonine, a metabolite of cocaine. Mr Stokes was subsequently charged with an Anti-Doping Rule Violation (ADRV) for the Presence of a Prohibited Substance under World Rugby Regulation 21.2.1.

As the RFU did not challenge Mr Stokes’ account that the ADRV was not intentional, the NADP Tribunal consisting of David Casement QC (Chairman), Dr Mike Irani and Carole Billington-Wood concluded that the applicable period of Ineligibility to be imposed should be two (2) years.

Mr Stokes’ ban will run from 31 March 2017, the date of sample collection, until midnight on 30 March 2019.

The full NADP Decision can be accessed via the related links tab on the right-hand side.

The National Anti-Doping Panel (NADP) is the United Kingdom’s independent tribunal responsible for adjudicating anti-doping disputes in sport. It is operated by Sport Resolutions and is entirely independent of UK Anti-Doping and the RFU, who are responsible for investigating, charging and prosecuting cases before the NADP.