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Russia passes amendments to fine dopers

MOSCOW -- The Russian parliament has voted to impose fines of up to 50,000 rubles ($775) for athletes who dope, after repeated investigations found widespread drug use among top athletes.

The amendments passed by the lower house of parliament Thursday mark the first moves in Russia to use the law to punish athletes.

Previously, only those who helped others dope could be fined, though that legislation has been used rarely, if at all.

Only athletes deemed to have intentionally cheated would be subject to fines.

International anti-doping watchdogs haven't always welcomed Russian law enforcement getting involved in drug cases. An ongoing Russian investigation into doping and malpractice at the Moscow anti-doping laboratory has sealed off many stored samples that the World Anti-Doping Agency wants to test.