Grigory Rodchenkov, former director of Russia’s Anti Doping laboratory, admitted to creating substances to enhance the performance of Russian Olympic athletes. Telling the New York Times in 2016 that the Russian intelligence services had helped by formulating a way of opening and resealing urine containers. These allegations prompted an investigation by the World Anti-doping agency.
Mr. Rodchenko was previously accused of taking part in illegal trafficking of performance-enhancing drugs; however, he was never convicted. He said he was not jailed because of the state’s interest in doping athletes for that year’s winter Olympics.
Mr. Rodchenko had created a cocktail of anabolic steroids that helped athletes recover quickly from training regimes. The Russian authorities appointed an officer to his laboratory to gain information about the urine samples taken from athletes and the self-locking glass bottles which contained them.
On July 19 the World Anti Doping Agency declared the Russians had indeed actively helped athletes cheat in most summer and winter Olympic sports. This call caused a petition for the entire Olympic team to be banned from the 2016 Rio Olympics. In his interview with the New York Times, Mr. Rodchenko said doping athletes was part of his job and that his laboratory would have stopped receiving funding if he had refused to do so.
Grigory Rodchenkov was forced to resign from his position at the Russian Anti Doping Laboratory. In January of 2016, he fled to the United States with the help of documentary maker Bryan Fogel, fearing for his safety. In February of the same year, two former senior officials at the Russian anti-doping agency died unexpectedly.