TALLINN - The International Ski Federation (FIS) informed on Friday that it has handed down four-year competition bans as punishment for the violation of anti-doping rules to Estonian Nordic skiers Karel Tammjarv, Andreas Veerpalu and Algo Karp, and prohibitions on being active in competitive skiing of the same length to coaches Mati Alaver and Andrus Veerpalu, Postimees reported.
"We have done a thorough investigation of this situation," said FIS secretary general Sarah Lewis.
Both Alaver and two times Olympic champion Andrus Veerpalu, who is the father of the skier Andreas Veerpalu, are believed to have been suspended for their involvement in the scandal that broke out during the Seefeld World Cup.
Speaking of Andrus Veerpalu, Sarah Fussek, anti-doping director at FIS said that Veerpalu is suspected of violating FIS anti-doping rules.
"But we're not done with the whole investigation yet, so we can't give any more details than releasing his name," Fussek said.
First-time violation of anti-doping rules is punished with a competition ban of four years. Three Estonian skiers -- Tammjarv, Karp and Andreas Veerpalu -- have admitted to using blood doping.
The Tallinn-based Harju County Court in mid-November found former Estonian coach Alaver to be guilty of inducing athletes to use doping and handed down a suspended jail sentence of one year in jail with a probation period of one year and six months to the 65-year-old.
Alaver was accused of inducing several athletes to the use of blood doping and other doping substances making use of the authority and trust arising from his position as a coach.