- Article 1 - Policy Scope and Application
- Article 2 - Prohibited Conduct and Offences
- Article 3 - Prohibited Substances
- Article 4 - Therapeutic Use Exemptions (“TUEs”)
- Article 5 - Sample Collection and Analysis
- Article 6 - Results Management and Investigation
- Article 7 - Disciplinary Procedure and Notice of Charge
- Article 8 - Standard of Proof and Evidence
- Article 9 - Sanctions on Participants
- Article 10 - Appeals
- Article 11 - Recognition of Decisions
- Article 12 - Public Disclosure and Confidentiality
- Article 13 - Release
- Article 14 - Governing Law and Continuing Jurisdiction
ESIC have developed this Anti-Doping Policy (the “Anti-Doping Policy”) to protect the integrity of esports. The Anti-Doping Policy is adopted and implemented as part of ESIC’s continuing efforts to maintain the integrity, popularity and public image of esports as well as the health and safety of all players, by providing:
(a) an effective means to deter any Participant from engaging in doping whilst participating in esports competitions;
(b) clarity about the definition of prohibited substances in esports;
(c) a mechanism for approval of prohibited substances as part of a verified therapeutic regime,
(d) a robust disciplinary process pursuant to which an anti-doping rule violation can be dealt with fairly, with certainty and in an expeditious manner.
ESIC are committed to educating players on the harms associated with doping substances and the consequences of violating this Policy. The Policy will be administered by the Esports Independent Anti-Doping Programme Administrator (the “Independent Anti-Doping Programme Administrator”), with the assistance of ESIC staff and external legal, medical, and scientific experts. The Integrity Commissioner may delegate responsibilities outlined below to the Independent Anti-Doping Programme Administrator as required.
Nothing in this Policy shall limit the absolute discretion of the Integrity Commissioner to deal with any matter covered by this Policy in the manner he/she feels most appropriate and in the best interests of ESIC and esports even if such decision or action by the Integrity Commissioner is contradictory to any Article or provision of this Policy.
Capitalised words in this policy have the meanings set forth in the Definitions section of the ESIC Programme.
Article 1 - Policy Scope and Application
1.1 All Participants are automatically bound by and required to comply with all terms and provisions of the Anti-Doping Policy, specifically:
1.1.1 that it is their personal responsibility to familiarise themselves and comply with all of the requirements of the Anti-Doping Policy, including what conduct constitutes an offence under the Anti-Doping Policy;
1.1.2 to submit to testing when requested by an authorised official;
1.1.3 to submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of any Match Referee, the Integrity Commissioner, Disciplinary Panel or Appeal Panel convened under the Disciplinary Procedure to hear and determine charges brought (and any appeals in relation thereto) pursuant to the Anti-Doping Policy; and
1.1.4 not to bring any proceedings in any court or other forum that are inconsistent with the foregoing submission to the jurisdiction of the Match Referee, Integrity Commissioner, Disciplinary Panel or Appeal Panel.
1.2 All Participants shall continue to be bound by and required to comply with the Anti-Doping Policy until he/she has not participated or been involved in a Match or Event for a period of three (3) months and ESIC shall continue to have jurisdiction over him/her under the Anti-Doping Policy thereafter in respect of matters taking place prior to that point.
1.3 Without prejudice to Articles 1.1 and 1.2, ESIC and the Members shall be responsible for promoting Anti-Doping Policy awareness and education amongst all Participants.
1.4 It is acknowledged that certain Participants may also be subject to other rules of Members that govern discipline and/or conduct, and/or national legislation in respect of illicit drugs, and that the same conduct of such Participants may implicate not only the Anti-Doping Policy but also such other rules and illegal activities that may apply. For the avoidance of any doubt, Participants acknowledge and agree that: (a) the Anti-Doping Policy is not intended to limit the responsibilities of any Participant under such other rules and/or legislation; and (b) nothing in such other rules and/or legislation shall be capable of removing, superseding or amending in any way the jurisdiction of the Match Referee, Integrity Commissioner, Disciplinary Panel or Appeal Panel to determine matters properly arising pursuant to the Anti-Doping Policy.
1.5 ESIC retains jurisdiction to bring Anti-Doping Rule Violation cases against retired players on account of an Anti-Doping Rule Violation which occurred while a player was a member in an Event or Match over which an ESIC Member had jurisdiction.
Article 2 - Prohibited Conduct and Offences
The following constitute Anti-Doping Rule Violations under the Policy:
2.1. The presence of a Prohibited Substance or its Metabolites or Markers in a Player’s sample.
2.1.1. It is each Player’s personal duty to ensure that no Prohibited Substance enters his body. Players are responsible for any Prohibited Substance or its Metabolites or Markers found to be present in their samples. Accordingly, it is not necessary that intent, fault, negligence or knowing Use on the Player’s part be demonstrated in order to establish an Anti-Doping Rule Violation under Article 2.
2.1.2 Sufficient proof of an Anti-Doping Rule Violation under Article 2.1 is established by either of the following: (1) an Adverse Analytical Finding upon analysis of the player’s A sample where the player waives analysis of the B sample or, (2) where the player’s B sample is analysed, the analysis of the player’s B sample confirms the presence of the Prohibited Substance or its Metabolites or Markers found in the player’s A sample.
2.1.3. Excepting those substances for which a quantitative reporting threshold is specifically identified in the ESIC Prohibited List, the presence of any quantity of a Prohibited Substance or its Metabolites or Markers in a player’s sample shall constitute an Anti-Doping Rule Violation.
2.2. Use or Attempted Use by a Player of a Prohibited Substance. The success or failure of the Use of a Prohibited Substance is not relevant. It is sufficient that the Prohibited Substance was Used or Attempted to be Used for an Anti-Doping Rule Violation to be committed.
2.3. Refusing or failing without compelling justification to submit to sample collection after notification or otherwise evading sample collection or to cooperate with any investigation carried out by ESIC in relation to possible Anti-Doping Rule Violation.
2.4. Tampering, or Attempting to Tamper with any part of Doping Control or investigation.
2.5. Possession by a Participant of any Prohibited Substance, unless the Player establishes that the Possession is pursuant to a therapeutic use exemption granted in accordance with Article 4 (Therapeutic Use Exemptions) or other acceptable justification.
2.6. Trafficking in any Prohibited Substance.
2.7. Administration or Attempted administration to any Player of any Prohibited Substance or assisting, encouraging, aiding, abetting, covering up or any other type of complicity involving an Anti-Doping rule violation or any Attempted Anti-Doping Rule Violation.
2.8. Admissions by a Player of any of the conduct listed in Clauses 2 (1)-(7) above.
2.9. Complicity, assisting, encouraging, aiding, abetting, conspiring, covering up or any other type of intentional complicity involving an Anti-Doping Rule Violation or Attempted Anti-Doping Rule Violation.
2.10. Prohibited Association.
2.10.1 Whilst it is not an offence under this Policy for a Participant to associate with persons who are banned by ESIC for a Doping offence or any other Anti-Doping Organisation or appear on the WADA warning list as amended from time to time, the Disciplinary or Appeal Panel is entitled to draw an adverse inference from any such association and such association should, therefore, be avoided.
Article 3 - Prohibited Substances
3.1 ESIC shall publish an esports specific Prohibited List which identifies substances prohibited under the Policy. ESIC have the right to amend the esports Prohibited List from time to time. If the esports Prohibited List is amended, unless ESIC decides otherwise, the elements so amended will go into effect three months (90 days) after publication on the ESIC website.
3.2 ESIC may also establish an esports specific Monitoring List of substances which are not currently prohibited but which laboratories will be asked to identify in analysing samples so that the ESIC can evaluate whether those substances are being abused. Laboratory results of samples pertaining to substances on the Monitoring List shall be reported anonymously. The presence of a monitored substance in a player’s system is not a violation under the Policy.
Article 4 - Therapeutic Use Exemptions (“TUEs”)
4.1 Players may obtain a TUE for the use of a Prohibited Substance where the Player fulfils the following criteria:
4.1.1 The Player applies for a TUE in accordance with Article 4.3 below in good time and, in any event, in advance of participation in any Match or Event; and
4.1.2 The Player would experience a significant impairment to health if the Prohibited Substance were to be withheld in the course of treating an acute or chronic medical condition; and
4.1.3 The therapeutic use of the Prohibited Substance would produce no additional enhancement of performance other than that which might be anticipated by a return to a state of normal health following the treatment of a legitimate medical condition; and
4.1.4 There is no reasonable therapeutic alternative to the use of the otherwise Prohibited Substance; and
4.1.5 The necessity for the use of the otherwise Prohibited Substance is not a consequence, wholly or in part, of a prior non-therapeutic use of any substance on the Prohibited List.
4.2 The presence of a Prohibited Substance or its Metabolites or Markers, Use or Attempted Use of a Prohibited Substance or Prohibited Method, Possession of a Prohibited Substance or Prohibited Method or administration of a Prohibited Substance or Prohibited Method consistent with the provisions of an applicable TUE shall not be considered an Anti-Doping Rule Violation.
4.3 A submission (including all requested medical information) for a TUE shall be made to the Independent Anti-Doping Programme Administrator or Integrity Commissioner at the time of registration for the Match/Event for which the TUE would be applicable. If the Independent Anti-Doping Programme Administrator or Integrity Commissioner has any misgivings about issuing a TUE, the submission will be considered by an independent TUE Committee appointed and administered by ESIC, who may seek the guidance of additional specialists as appropriate from an established list of medical experts.
4.4 A retroactive TUE submission may be submitted in emergency circumstances (the failure of a Participant to obtain a TUE in the normal way for an existing condition is not an emergency). Outside of emergency circumstances, retroactive TUEs may be granted only where the Player undergoes, at his/her expense, all testing procedures required by the Integrity Commissioner and where the medical justification for the TUE is clear. Non-emergency retroactive TUE submission shall be accompanied by a filing fee of £5,000 (sterling).
4.5 A Player whose TUE submission is rejected by the TUE Committee may appeal the rejection to a TUE Appeal Committee by submitting a written appeal to the Integrity Commissioner within fourteen (14) days of the date of Notification of the rejection. In considering the appeal, the TUE Appeal Committee may consult with additional medical advisors and may require the player to submit additional information. Within fourteen (14 days) of receiving the TUE appeal, the Integrity Commissioner will advise the Player of the TUE Appeal Committee’s decision either accepting or rejecting the TUE. The TUE Appeal Committee’s decision on the TUE is final and binding.
4.6 Prior to a TUE being granted, a player who uses a substance on the Prohibited List does so at his own risk of a TUE rejection, potentially resulting in a violation under the Policy.
Article 5 - Sample Collection and Analysis
5.1 ESIC shall authorise accredited third parties to collect a body fluid and/or hair sample from any Player covered by the Policy with or without notice at any time or place. Target Testing may be directed by the Integrity Commissioner or the Independent Anti-Doping Administrator. Once collected, all samples become the property of ESIC.
5.2 For purposes of violations of Article 2 of the Policy, samples shall be analysed only in laboratories approved by ESIC. The choice of the laboratory used for sample analysis shall be determined exclusively by ESIC.
5.3 Samples shall be analysed to detect Prohibited Substances identified on the esports Prohibited List and on the esports Monitoring List or to assist ESIC in profiling relevant parameters for Anti-Doping purposes. A sample may be reanalysed at any time at the direction of the Integrity Commissioner. No sample may be used for any other purpose without the Player’s consent. Samples used for research shall have any means of identification removed such that they cannot be traced back to a particular Player.
5.4 Laboratories shall analyse anonymous samples for the substances specified and report results in conformance with strict confidentiality obligations set out in a written contractual agreement. If, at any stage, any question or issue arises in relation to a sample, the laboratory may, at the Integrity Commissioner’s request, conduct any further or other tests necessary to clarify the question or issue so raised and such tests may be relied upon by ESIC when deciding whether an Anti-Doping Rule Violation may have been committed.
Article 6 - Results Management and Investigation
- 1. Upon receipt of a laboratory report showing no violation under the Policy, ESIC will promptly notify the Player of the result.
- 2. Upon receipt of a laboratory report indicating an A sample Adverse Analytical Finding, the Integrity Commissioner will check if an applicable TUE has been submitted or whether there is any apparent departure from reasonable testing or laboratory standards that could reasonably have caused the Adverse Analytical Finding. If that review does not reveal an applicable TUE, or declaration, or departure from reasonable standards, the Integrity Commissioner shall promptly Notify the Player of the Adverse Analytical Finding and the date on which the laboratory will conduct the B sample analysis. Analysis of the B sample may be delayed, at the Integrity Commissioner’s discretion, if the player promptly submits a retroactive TUE application. The Player may attend the B sample analysis accompanied by a representative, or may have a representative appear on his behalf at the Player’s expense. The Player may also waive analysis of the B sample. The Player must notify the Integrity Commissioner within two (2) business days whether he will attend the B sample analysis. If the Player waives the B sample analysis, ESIC may nevertheless proceed to have the B sample analysed if it considers that such analysis will be relevant to consideration of the Player’s case. Upon receipt of the laboratory’s B sample analytical report, the Integrity Commissioner shall promptly Notify the player of the result. If the B sample analysis confirms the A sample Adverse Analytical Finding, the Integrity Commissioner shall provide the player with the applicable laboratory documentation.
6.3. At such time as the Integrity Commissioner determines that a Player has a case to answer under Article 2, i.e. may have committed an Anti-Doping Rule Violation, the Player shall be Notified of the potential violation, then the Participant shall be sent written notice of the following (the “Notice of Charge”):
6.3.1 that the Participant has a case to answer under Article 2;
6.3.2 the specific offence(s) that the Participant is alleged to have committed;
6.3.3 details of the alleged acts relied upon in support of the charge;
6.3.4 the sanctions applicable under the Anti-Doping Code if the charge is admitted or upheld;
6.3.5 (where applicable) matters relating to Provisional Suspension specified at Article 6.4;
6.3.6 that if the Participant wishes to exercise his/her right to a Hearing before the Disciplinary Panel (whether to contest liability or sanction or both), he/she must submit a written request for a Hearing that explains how the Participant responds to the charge(s) and (in summary form) the basis for such response. To be effective, the request must be received by the Integrity Commissioner as soon as possible, but in any event within fourteen (14) days of the Participant’s receipt of the Notice of Charge.
6.3.7 The Integrity Commissioner will consider any information submitted by the Player and shall then decide whether to go forward with an Anti-Doping Rule Violation against the Player. If the Integrity Commissioner’s decision is to go forward with an Anti-Doping Rule Violation, the player shall be Notified of the Anti-Doping Rule Violation with which he is charged and of the applicable sanctions (or range of sanctions) for such violation in accordance with Article 7 below.
6.4 Provisional Suspension: Where either: (a) the Integrity Commissioner decides to charge a Participant with an offence under the Anti-Doping Policy; or (b) the Integrity Commissioner considers that there are other exceptional circumstances relevant to a Participant (for example, where any relevant police authority has arrested and/or charged a Participant with an offence under any relevant criminal law in respect of facts or circumstances that may also constitute an offence under the Anti-Doping Policy), he/she shall have the discretion, in circumstances where he/she considers that the integrity of esports, a Game, Match or Event could otherwise be seriously undermined, to Provisionally Suspend the Participant pending the Disciplinary Panel’s determination of whether he/she has committed an offence. Any decision to Provisionally Suspend the Participant will be communicated to the Participant in writing, with a copy sent at the same time to the relevant Member/s in whose Game or Event the Individual is or was participating or in which he/she usually participates.
6.5 In all cases, the Participant shall be given an opportunity to contest such Provisional Suspension in a Provisional Hearing taking place before the Chairman of the ESIC Panel (sitting alone) on a timely basis after its imposition. At any such Provisional Hearing, it shall be the burden of ESIC to establish that in such circumstances, the integrity of esports, the Game or Event could be seriously undermined if he/she does not remain Provisionally Suspended pending determination of the charge(s) or such other date (as may be applicable). The Provisional Hearing shall take place on the basis of written submissions alone, save where the Chairman of the ESIC Panel determines otherwise in his absolute discretion.
6.6 In a case involving an Illicit/Recreational Drug, the Integrity Commissioner may decide, rather than referring the case to discipline, to recommend that the Player undergo at his own expense a programme of assessment, counselling, treatment or rehabilitation. If the player refuses to undergo, or subsequently fails to complete, the recommended programme, the Integrity Commissioner shall decide whether to issue the player with Notice of an Anti-Doping Rule Violation as if no period of assessment, counselling, treatment or rehabilitation has taken place.
6.7 Any allegation of a breach of the Anti-Doping Policy (either analytical or other report) shall be referred to the Integrity Commissioner for investigation. Participants must cooperate fully with such investigations, failing which any such Participant shall be liable to be charged with a violation under Article 4 (Tampering or Attempting to Tamper) and/or Article 9 (Complicity, assisting, encouraging, aiding, abetting, conspiring, covering up or any other type of intentional complicity involving an Anti-Doping Rule Violation).
Article 7 - Disciplinary Procedure and Notice of Charge
- 1 The Integrity Commissioner shall promptly provide a copy of the Laboratory Report, together with a Notice of Charge to the following individuals:
7.1.1 the Participant named in the Report and
7.1.2 the Team Manager (if there is one) of the relevant Participant named in the Report.
7.2 The Notice of Charge shall specify that the Participant shall have the following three options:
7.2.1 he/she may admit the offence charged and accede to the suggested sanction specified in the Notice of Charge (which sanction shall be strictly at the Integrity Commissioner’s discretion, but at all times within the appropriate range for the level of Offence by reference to the Disciplinary Procedure and set out for clarity at Article 7.5 below). In such circumstances, and provided that such admission has been received by the Integrity Commissioner prior to the commencement of any Hearing offered in the Notice of Charge, the Hearing before the Disciplinary Panel shall not be required and no further action shall be taken, save that ESIC shall promptly issue a public statement confirming: (a) the commission of an offence under the Anti-Doping Code; and (b) the imposition of the applicable sanction specified in the Notice of Charge as accepted by the Participant; or
7.2.2 he/she may admit the offence charged but dispute the suggested sanction specified in the Notice of Charge, in which case the matter shall proceed to a Hearing in accordance with the Disciplinary Procedure; or
7.2.3 he/she may deny the offence charged, in which case the matter shall proceed to a Hearing in accordance with the Disciplinary Procedure.
7.3 Responding to a Notice of Charge: If the Participant fails to file a written request for a Hearing before the Disciplinary Panel in accordance with Article 6.3 (or by any extended deadline that the Integrity Commissioner deems appropriate), then he/she shall be deemed to have waived his/her entitlement to a Hearing; admitted that he/she has committed the offence(s) under the Anti-Doping Policy specified in the Notice of Charge; and acceded to the range of applicable sanctions specified in the Notice of Charge. In such circumstances, a Hearing before the Disciplinary Panel shall not be required. Instead, the Integrity Commissioner shall promptly issue a public decision confirming the offence(s) under the Anti-Doping Policy specified in the Notice of Charge and the imposition of an applicable sanction within the range specified in the Notice of Charge. Before issuing that public decision, the Integrity Commissioner will provide written notice of that decision to the Member/s in who’s Game/s and/or Event/s the Participant usually participates. Where the Individual does request a Hearing in accordance with Article 6, the matter shall proceed to a Hearing in accordance with the Disciplinary Procedure.
7.4 The procedure to be used to deal with allegations of offences under the Anti-Doping Policy is the ESIC Disciplinary Procedure.
7.5. The range of appropriate sanctions for Anti-Doping Rule Violations shall be those set out for level 4 offences under the Code of Conduct for Participants, being:
|Level 4||First OffenceA fine of up to 100% of Match and/or Event Prize money (or equivalent) and/or between 4 and 8 Suspension Points and/or a fixed term of suspension from the Game and/or Event/s of up to 24 months||Second OffenceThe imposition of a suspension from the Game and/or Event/s and/or any Game/s and/or and Event/s and/or all Esports of between one (1) year and a lifetime||Third OffenceUp to a lifetime suspension from all Esports|
Article 8 - Standard of Proof and Evidence
8.1 Unless otherwise described herein, the standard of proof in all cases brought under the Anti-Doping Policy shall be whether on the balance of probability the Integrity Commissioner or Panel (as appropriate) is comfortably satisfied, bearing in mind the seriousness of the allegation that is made, that the alleged offence has been committed. This standard of proof in all cases shall be determined on a sliding scale from, at a minimum, a mere balance of probability (for the least serious offences) up to close to, but not as high as, proof beyond a reasonable doubt (for the most serious offences).
8.2 The Integrity Commissioner or Panel shall not be bound by judicial rules governing the admissibility of evidence. Instead, facts relating to an offence committed under the Anti-Doping Policy may be established by any reliable means, including admissions.
8.3 The Integrity Commissioner or Panel may draw an inference adverse to the Participant who is asserted to have committed an offence under the Anti-Doping Policy based on his/her refusal, without compelling justification, after a request made in a reasonable time in advance of the Hearing, to appear at the Hearing (either in person or telephonically as directed by the Integrity Commissioner or Panel) and/or to answer any relevant questions.
8.4 Where the burden of proof is placed on the Participant to rebut a presumption or to establish specified facts or circumstances, the standard of proof shall be by a balance of probability and shall specifically not require proof beyond a reasonable doubt. No discovery shall be permitted for any Hearing under this section other than as specified below. The following presumptions shall be applicable:
8.4.1 Approved laboratories are presumed to have conducted sample analysis and custodial procedures in accordance with their specified accredited standard and to be scientifically valid.
8.4.2 Samples have been collected, sealed, uniquely identified with the Player’s confirmation and transferred to the laboratory, using a secure tamper evident chain of custody.
8.4.3 The Player may rebut the presumptions set out in Clause 8.4.1 and/or 8.4.2 by establishing that a departure from that standard occurred which could reasonably have caused the Adverse Analytical Finding. ESIC shall have the burden to establish that such departure did not cause the Adverse Analytical Finding or the factual basis for the Anti-Doping Rule Violation.
8.5 Departures from sample collection, chain of custody or analytical procedures which did not cause the analytical finding shall not invalidate the results.
8.6 Facts established by a decision of a court or professional disciplinary tribunal of competent jurisdiction which are not the subject of a pending appeal shall be irrefutable evidence against the Participant to whom the decision pertained, unless the Participant establishes that the decision violates natural justice.
Article 9 - Sanctions on Participants
9.1 Where a violation of the Anti-Doping Policy is admitted by a Participant or upheld by the Disciplinary Panel, the Anti-Doping Policy shall be required to impose an appropriate sanction upon the Participant from the range of permissible sanctions described in Article 7.5.
9.2 In order to determine the sanction that is to be imposed in each case, the Integrity Commissioner or Panel must first consider whether the Participant has previously been found guilty of an offence under the Anti-Doping Policy.
9.3 Once the Integrity Commissioner or Panel has established whether this is a repeat offence, then they shall go on to take into account any other factors that they deem relevant and appropriate to the mitigation or aggravation of the nature of the Anti-Doping Policy offence (including, without limitation, the nature and frequency of any previous offences under the Anti-Doping Policy, aggravating factors such as lack of remorse on the part of the individual, previous history of disciplinary offences, or related criminal or regulatory offence, whether the offence could be considered potentially damaging to esports, or to affect the result of a Game/Match, or whether the welfare of an individual has been endangered, mitigation or admission, youth or inexperience, cooperation with the ESIC investigation) before determining, in accordance with the table at Article 7.5, what the appropriate sanction(s) should be.
9.4 For the avoidance of doubt the Integrity Commissioner and/or Disciplinary Panel has jurisdiction to adjust, reverse of amend the results of any Match(es) and/or Event(s) in question. Where a fine and/or costs award is imposed against a Participant, such fine and or costs award must be paid directly to ESIC no later than one month following the receipt of the decision. Unless otherwise determined each party is responsible for its own costs of the Hearing.
Article 10 - Appeals
10.1 Decisions under Appeal shall remain in effect and binding pending resolution of the appeal.
10.2 Anti-Doping Policy violations may be appealed as set out in the Disciplinary Procedure.
Article 11 - Recognition of Decisions
11.1 All ESIC Members shall comply with the Anti-Doping Policy and take all necessary and reasonable steps within their powers to recognise, enforce, extend and give effect to all decisions taken and Provisional Suspensions and sanctions imposed under the Anti-Doping Policy within their own respective jurisdictions, without the need for further formality. This shall include (without limitation), where it has the jurisdiction to do so, requiring the organisers or promoters of any Matches or Events to recognise and give effect to such decisions and Provisional Suspensions and sanctions.
Article 12 - Public Disclosure and Confidentiality
12.1 ESIC will use all reasonable efforts to maintain the confidentiality of Participants in all aspects of the Anti-Doping programme, except as provided in this Article.
12.2 Save in exceptional circumstances where ESIC (acting reasonably) deems it necessary for the purposes of protecting the integrity of esports and/or any of its Members (for example in circumstances where there is significant damaging and/or incorrect media speculation), neither ESIC nor any Member shall publicly identify any Participant who is being investigated or is alleged to have committed an offence under the Anti-Doping Policy until he/she has been formally charged pursuant to Article 7, at which point it shall be entitled to publicly announce the name of the Participant charged and the offences with which he/she has been charged. Thereafter, ESIC will not comment publicly on the specific facts of a pending case except in response to public comments made by (or on behalf of) the Participant involved in the case or his/her representatives or where otherwise necessary to preserve the public’s confidence in the ability of ESIC to fight corruption in esports.
12.3 Once the Integrity Commissioner or Disciplinary Panel has issued its decision in respect of any charges brought under the Anti-Doping Policy:
12.3.1 If the decision is that an offence has been committed: (a) the decision may, at ESIC’s discretion, be publicly reported in full as soon as possible; and (b) after the decision is publicly reported, ESIC may also publish such other parts of the proceedings before the Panel as ESIC thinks fit.
12.3.2 If the decision exonerates the Participant, then the decision may be publicly reported only with the consent of the Participant. ESIC shall use reasonable efforts to obtain such consent, and (if consent is obtained) shall publicly disclose the decision in its entirety or in such redacted form as the Participant may approve.
12.3.3 ESIC shall use its best endeavours to ensure that persons under its control do not publicly identify Participants who are alleged to have committed an offence under the Anti-Doping Policy other than in accordance with this Article 12. However, ESIC in its discretion, may at any time disclose to other organisations such information as ESIC may consider necessary or appropriate to facilitate administration or enforcement of the Anti-Doping Policy, provided that each organisation provides assurance satisfactory to ESIC that the organisation will maintain all such information in confidence.
12.4 ESIC may publish statistical information about the Policy, including a list of occasions when Players are tested.
12.5 ESIC may recognise and give effect to the Anti-Doping decisions of other esports organisations in all cases where those decisions would be equally appropriate under this Policy.
Article 13 - Release
As a condition of membership or participation in Games, Matches and/or Events under ESIC’s jurisdiction, each Participant hereby releases ESIC, its Integrity Commissioner, the Anti-Doping Programme Administrator, and each director, officer, member, employee, agent or representative of any ESIC Member, jointly and severally, individually and in their official capacity, of and from any and all claims, demands, damages and causes of action whatsoever, in law or equity, in arising out of or in connection with any decision, act or omission arising under the Policy.
Article 14 - Governing Law and Continuing Jurisdiction
This Policy and any matter arising from or in connection with it shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the law of England. All disputes arising from this Policy shall be submitted to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England. Actions may be commenced under this Policy against any Participant for an Anti-Doping Rule Violation contained in this Policy within 10 years from the date the Anti-Doping Rule Violation occurred.