British MP's son banned for taking cocktail of drugs
LONDON (Reuters) - Promising rugby player Jonathan Spelman, the teenage son of a senior British politician, has been banned for 21 months by the Rugby Football Union (RFU) after admitting taking a cocktail of prohibited substances.
The 17-year-old, whose mother is Environment Secretary Caroline Spelman, appeared before an independent tribunal last month charged with taking testosterone, drostanolone, growth hormone, human chorionic gonadotropin, clomid and nolvadex.
His parents initially tried to prevent him being named by a Sunday newspaper but a privacy injunction was lifted on Monday after a judge ruled against it last week.
Spelman, who played for England under-16s and Harlequins, reportedly took the drugs after being injured playing in a school match. He will not be able to play until October 2013.
Christopher Quinlan QC, who led the tribunal, said in an RFU statement: "In fixing the appropriate period of suspension the tribunal had regard to all the relevant matters advanced during the course of the hearing, including the player's youth, immaturity and admissions.
"It therefore reduced by three months the otherwise applicable period of ineligibility of two years and imposed a period of ineligibility (suspension) of 21 months."
Public school educated Spelman has appealed against the decision.
(Reporting by Martyn Herman, editing by Justin Palmer)
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