New law would triple doping penalties
The justice minister, Morten Bødskov (Socialdemokraterne), wants to increase the prison time for the sale and use of performance-enhancing drugs from the current two years to up to six years for serious offences. The increased penalties are part of an effort to clean up a practice that is rampant inside many of the country's fitness centres.
“The government takes doping seriously and wants to send a signal to the gangs that profit from drugs that they will not be tolerated,” Bødskov said in a ministry press release.
Bødskov said he is “fighting fire with fire” by raising the penalties for what he described as doping crimes with “aggravated circumstances”.
The release outlined several situations under which the maximum penalty would be levied, including the distribution of steroids to large numbers of people and earning large sums of money from selling the drugs.
The bill brings Denmark in line with its Nordic neighbours Norway and Sweden, where the punishment for doping crimes is six years for serious offences.
The new law would also allow police greater latitude in intercepting and monitoring communications to combat steroid use.
Bødskov submitted the draft proposal last Friday, and it is expected to be taken up by parliament this coming session.