Prosecutors confirmed on Tuesday that Korea’s Olympic swimming champion Park Tae-hwan tested positive in a doping test because he took Nebido, a relatively new anabolic steroid.
The announcement was made only hours after Park’s agency Team GMP filed a lawsuit against a hospital for injecting Park with a prohibited substance.
Prosecutors promptly launched a probe into this case and summoned both officials of the hospital and Park’s agency for questioning.
Prosecutors are considering filing charges against the hospital for administering testosterone to the four-time Olympic swimming medalist.
“We will focus our investigation on finding why he had to be injected with the banned substance,” a prosecutor said.
The 25-year-old swimmer tested positive this January, four months after the controversial injection.
Team GMP claimed that Park was the one shocked the most by the doping test results.
“Park, of course, asked numerous times before getting the injection whether prohibited substances are included in the shot, and the doctor said it wasn’t,” reads the statement released by Park’s agency.
“He has not even taken cold medication for ten years over the concern that it will affect his doping test.”
Some observers point out that it would have been very unlikely for the doctor to have been unaware that steroid use is banned for Olympic athletes.
Park’s agency claims that Park received chiropractic treatment and health care in January from the hospital that gave Nebido to Park.
“There, he received a shot and when asked, the doctor said that the injection does not include any prohibited substance,” an official at the agency said.
Questions are also being raised why Park did not test positive at all during the Asian Games, which was two months after he received the shot.
He had passed all doping tests for the entire ten years of his career.
Team GMP could not be reached by press time.