Olympian from Jamaica tests positive

A Jamaican who competed in taekwondo at the London Olympics said

Tuesday he has tested positive for a banned substance.

Kenneth Edwards said he was notified a month ago about the

diuretic and is awaiting results of a backup sample. A diuretic

reduces body fluids and can mask drug use. He added he has not

competed since July.

“I remain committed to being a professional athlete and would

not do anything to compromise that position,” he said in a

statement. “I have every intention of challenging these

findings.”

Jason McKay, captain of Jamaica’s combined martial arts team,

told The Gleaner newspaper he supports Edwards.

“From what we understand, a diuretic has appeared in his sample,

which we are sure must be a mistake of some sort because, apart

from his unquestionable honesty and integrity, there is no

practical reason for him to be taking a diuretic, or any masking

agent, when not competing,” he said.

The announcement comes as the world’s anti-doping authority

launches a sweeping audit of Jamaica’s drug-testing agency amid

allegations of inconsistent testing. WADA officials expect to visit

the Caribbean island at the end of this year or the beginning of

2014.

Doping investigations also are underway involving other

Jamaicans, including sprint stars Asafa Powell and Sherone Simpson.

An anti-doping panel also publicly warned Veronica Campbell-Brown

for a violation, but she has been cleared to resume

competition.

Herb Elliott, chairman of Jamaica’s Anti-Doping Commission, did

not return calls. He previously dismissed allegations about testing

lapses between January 2012 to the July opening of the

Olympics.