Investigation “Anabolics mafia. The clandestine road of steroids from Moldova to foreign sportspeople”, written by journalist Mariana Rata from the Center for Investigative Journalism is one of the 7 investigations, published by media outlets in Europe, nominated for 2017 European Press Prize at „Investigation Award”.
“Extraordinary story. Impact is extraordinary. Legwork is extraordinary! Gripping, pacy investigation into how Moldovan officials and state agencies protect the country's booming, illegal trade in anabolic steroids”, said preparatory committee on Anabolics mafia.
Investigations written by journalists in the offices of The Guardian, Le Monde, Financial Times, International Consortium of Investigative Journalists etc. were nominated for the Grand Prix at category “Investigations”. The winners of the 2017 European Press Prize will be announced on April 20, 2017 in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.
Previously, Mariana Raţă was awarded I prize for this investigation in a national contest organized by UNDP in partnership with the National Anticorruption Center. This investigation was carried out under a project developed by the Center for Investigative Journalism in partnership with Freedom House.
According to this investigation, the Republic of Moldova is among the top global manufacturers of anabolic steroids, illegal substances in the majority of EU states, the USA, as well as Russia. Corruption, lax legislation and the political protectionism easily obtained have created conditions for the development of a huge industry of anabolics in our country, which are in great demand on the black market around the world. Nowadays, at least seven factories producing anabolics are operating in Moldova, four of which are clandestine laboratories. Legal manufacturers of anabolics allegedly get protection from a former Romanian senator, a prominent Moldovan businessman and a former president of the Federation of bodybuilding in Chisinau. Many of these anabolics get smuggled abroad in postal envelopes accepted and dispatched by the State Enterprise „Posta Moldovei”.