Banned canoeist not only spiked rival’s drink but also swiped his passport and defamed him in emails
Japan Times -- Jan 12
a canoeist who has been banned after admitting that he doped a fellow competitor’s drink, contrived a variety of schemes to rattle his rival, an official source said thursday.

Yasuhiro Suzuki, a 32-year-old athlete who has already admitted secretly adding a banned substance to a drink consumed by 25-year-old rival Seiji Komatsu last September, also took his rival’s passport and cash, and defamed him in emails. Suzuki has already apologized to Komatsu in writing.

Suzuki has been banned from competition by the Japan Anti-Doping Agency, while the Japan Canoe Federation has said it would seek a permanent ban.

According to an official, Suzuki, without any Olympic experience, last year had been unable to beat Komatsu, whose star was on the rise. Suzuki had already been excluded from a spot he had hoped to earn on the four-man kayak team. With concern over his ability to earn a spot at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, Suzuki allegedly hatched a scheme to begin harassing his rival.

At a training camp last June in Ishikawa Prefecture, Suzuki, attempting to annoy Komatsu, took his passport and ¥20,000 ($179) from the changing room. Thinking that if Komatsu were caught doping, he himself would have a chance to qualify for 2020, Suzuki’s campaign allegedly escalated at September’s national sprint canoe championships.

During qualifying, Suzuki put the steroid methandienone in Komatsu’s drink bottle. After the final, Suzuki took Komatsu’s speed meter and paddle, throwing the speed meter in a garbage can and hiding the paddle.

The loss of his passport prevented Komatsu from leaving on time for an overseas trip in July.

In September and October, Suzuki four times allegedly sent damaging emails of a private nature to Komatsu’s club.

News source: Japan Times
Jun 18
An earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 5.9 hit western Japan on Monday, the Japan Meteorological Agency said. (Japan Today)
Jun 18
A basketball referee was punched in the face by a high school player during a game in the western Japanese prefecture of Nagasaki on Sunday. (NHK)
Jun 18
Japanese car maker Toyota won the 24 Hours of Le Mans for the first time on Sunday. (NHK)
Jun 18
More than 2,000 venomous fire ants have been discovered in a shipping container from China that arrived at a port in Osaka Prefecture earlier this month, leaving two people hurt, government officials said. (Japan Today)
Jun 18
An estimated 1.3 million Japanese people aged 15 to 64 have used marijuana, surpassing for the first time the number of those who have abused inhalants such as paint thinner, a survey by a national institute showed Sunday. (Japan Today)
Jun 18
Jurina Matsui of SKE48, one of the AKB48 family of all-female idol groups, has taken the No. 1 spot in the franchise’s annual popularity contest, which was the first to let its Thai and Taiwanese members join the 10-year-old event. (Japan Times)
Jun 18
For a Filipino man visiting Tokyo in May last year, the tour of the capital was supposed to be a fun sightseeing trip. (Japan Times)
Jun 17
An earthquake shook Gunma Prefecture, north of Tokyo, on Sunday afternoon. No major damage has been reported. (NHK)
Jun 17
A nuclear reactor at a trouble-hit complex in southwestern Japan restarted operations Saturday for the first time in more than six and a half years amid lingering safety concerns. (Japan Today)
Jun 17
Police arrested Hiromi Tsukuda, former mayor of Ito in the central Japan prefecture of Shizuoka, Saturday on suspicion of bribery over the city's land purchase. (Jiji)