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3 more Olympic medals stripped in IOC doping retests

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LAUSANNE, Switzerland (AP) — Two wrestlers and a weightlifter have been stripped of Olympic medals for doping at the 2008 and 2012 Games.

The International Olympic Committee says Uzbek wrestler Artur Taymazov, who won a gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, and Ukrainian wrestler Vasyl Fedoryshyn, who won silver, have been ordered to return their medals.

Taymazov has not been stripped of his 2004 and 2012 golds.

Russian weightlifter Svetlana Tzarukaeva won silver at the 2012 London Games and also was asked to give her medal back.

The IOC, which stores doping samples for 10 years, reanalyzed more than 1,000 samples from Beijing and London with improved techniques that can detect the use of steroids going back weeks and months, rather than days.

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More 2008 Olympic medalists stripped due to doping

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Three Chinese weightlifting gold medalists from the 2008 Beijing Olympics and the women’s shot put bronze medalist were stripped of their medals due to doping violations.

Chen XiexiaCao Lei and Liu Chunhong, who won three of China’s four women’s weightlifting golds in Beijing, had retests of 2008 doping samples come back positive for the same banned growth hormone.

Their lost medals mean China’s tally from the Beijing Games is now fewer than 50 golds and fewer than 100 medals overall. China still won the most golds in Beijing and the second-most total medals behind the U.S.

Belarus shot putter Nadzeya Ostapchuk‘s retest came back positive for the banned steroid turinabol. Ostapchuk took bronze in Beijing behind New Zealand gold medalist Valerie Adams and Belarus silver medalist Nataliya Mikhnevich.

Mikhnevich was stripped of her silver medal in November after a 2008 retest came back positive for banned steroids.

Ostapchuk was previously stripped of her 2012 London Olympic shot put gold medal the day after that Closing Ceremony for failing a drug test during those Games.

She was later stripped of a 2005 World Championships title for doping and handed a four-year doping ban by the IAAF that expired last August.

Adams is the only original women’s shot put medalist from 2008 or 2012 who hasn’t been stripped of her medal.

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Kazakh weightlifters reportedly refuse to return Olympic medals

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ASTANA, Kazakhstan (AP) — Kazakhstan says three medalists are among six of its athletes disqualified from previous Olympics over doping.

The country’s national Olympic committee said in a statement that weightlifters Irina Nekrasova and Maria Grabovetskaya, who won silver and bronze medals respectively at Beijing 2008, and bronze medal-winning wrestler Aset Mambetov, were retroactively disqualified following retests of drug-test samples they gave at those games.

The Kazakhstan Olympic committee said it had received confirmation from the International Olympic Committee that “traces of banned substances were found” in the athletes’ samples.

The International Weightlifting Federation has previously said the Grabovetskaya and Nekrasova cases concerned various anabolic steroids, with Grabovetskaya testing positive for three different banned substances in a single sample. Wrestling authorities have not said what was found in Mambetov’s sample.

Grabovetskaya and Mambetov were quoted in Kazakh media as saying they will refuse to return their medals because they don’t consider themselves guilty of doping.

There are also retrospective disqualifications from the 2008 games for weightlifters Vladimir Sedov and Maiya Maneza, while another weightlifter, Almas Uteshov, has been scratched from the 2012 Olympics.

Kazakhstan has one of the worst records of any country in the retests carried out this year by the IOC, having already been stripped of three gold medals last month in earlier doping cases.

The retesting program has led to at least 98 positive tests from the 2008 and 2012 Olympics, many of them down to recent advances in techniques for detecting steroids.

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