NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 6 – Rosa Associati Director, Federico Rosa has been remanded in custody for two more days before he appears in court on Friday.
Federico, an Italian national who was arrested by the Anti-Narcotics Unit, appeared before Nairobi’s Kibera Principal Magistrate, Bernard Ochoi, on Wednesday after being booked with offences related to doping.
He was booked with an offence of conspiracy to cause injury to the reputation and profession of athletes and preventing some of them from their lawful exercise of their profession by doping.
Federico’s defence counsel wanted their client released on bond as the investigations goes on, but the Principal Magistrate denied bail, ordering him be detained until Friday at the Gigiri Police Station.
The prosecution through the investigating officer, Chief Inspector Joseph Indeke told the court he needs three more days to investigate the doping allegations as they plan to visit Eldoret, Iten and Nakuru.
Indeke said if the suspect is released he will interfere with investigations that are ongoing which saw Rosa’s former employee Claudio Berardelli, the former coach of disgraced three-time Boston Marathon champion Rita Jeptoo arrested on Tuesday night over the same case.
“I have considered the nature of charges that the police intend to prefer against the suspect, I have also considered the explanation given that some of these witnesses are outside Nairobi, therefore I find the application is reasonable and the investigation officer deservers time as sort,” the Principal Magistrate directed.
“In order to safeguard the rights of the suspect who is presumed not guilty and considering the statement from the investigation officer that the investigations have already began, I direct that the suspect be remanded until Friday this week when he will appear before court,” Ochoi ruled.
Federico and his father Gabrielle were grilled by the Directorate of Criminal Investigation (DCI) for two days after recording statements on July 1 in Eldoret when the two were attending Kenya’s Olympics Trials at the Kipchoge Keino Stadium.
A search was conducted in their hotel rooms with their passports confiscated, but nothing was found.
They were ordered to present themselves to the DCI on Monday, July 4, for further interrogation where Police released Gabrielle while detaining Federico who is a director in the Italian registered firm that handles top athletes including three-time world champion Asbel Kiprop as well as marathoners Stanley Biwott and Jemimah Sumgong.
The development comes weeks after President Uhuru Kenyatta signed the 2016 Amended Anti-Doping Bill into law that recommends a fine of Sh3m and/or a three-year jail term for persons administering banned substances to athletes.
Rosa Associati was suspended for six months by Athletics Kenya (AK) last year on allegations of widespread doping in their camps spread over Eldoret, Kaptagat and Kapsabet although the decision was lifted in October.
Jeptoo was suspended for two years in 2014 and Matthew Kisorio, who finished his ban in July last year as well as women 800m runner, Agatha Jeruto are athletes formerly of the Rosa stable that have been suspended for doping violations.