Louis Smith gets 2-month sus­pen­sion for mis­con­duct

Malta Independent - - SPORT -

Two-time Olympic sil­ver medal­ist Louis Smith was sus­pended for two months by the Bri­tish gym­nas­tics fed­er­a­tion yes­ter­day af­ter ap­pear­ing to mock Is­lam in a video.

An in­de­pen­dent panel found that Smith's be­hav­ior was "a breach of the stan­dards of con­duct."

Smith and for­mer Bri­tish team­mate Luke Car­son ap­peared in a leaked video laugh­ing and pre­tend­ing to pray while shout­ing "Al­lahu Ak­bar," Ara­bic for "God is great­est."

Smith apol­o­gized for the in­ci­dent.

Smith had been warned in June af­ter a pre­vi­ous, un­re­lated case of mis­con­duct. Fol­low­ing the lat­est breach, the dis­ci­plinary panel "de­ter­mined a cu­mu­la­tive penalty was ap­pro­pri­ate and or­dered a two-month pe­riod of sus­pen­sion."

Car­son was handed a "reprimand" be­cause he had no pre­vi­ous cases. The reprimand will re­main on his record for two years, the fed­er­a­tion said.

Smith won sil­ver medals in the pom­mel horse at the 2012 Lon­don Olympics and 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games. He won bronze in the pom­mel horse at the 2008 Bei­jing Olympics and a team bronze in Lon­don.

Car­son, who has com­peted for North­ern Ire­land at the Com­mon­wealth Games and other in­ter­na­tional events, re­tired last year be­cause of in­juries.

The two-month sus­pen­sion won't have much im­pact on the 27-year-old Smith. No ma­jor com­pe­ti­tions are sched­uled be­fore the end of the year. The only do­mes­tic event he would miss is the Bri­tish Club Team Cham­pi­onships in De­cem­ber.

Bri­tain won seven gym­nas­tics medals in Rio.

"It is re­gret­table that fol­low­ing a his­toric sum­mer of achieve­ment, the or­ga­ni­za­tion finds it­self in this dif­fi­cult po­si­tion with two high-pro­file mem­bers in breach of our stan­dards of con­duct," Bri­tish Gym­nas­tics chief ex­ec­u­tive Jane Allen said in a state­ment.

"Whilst both in­di­vid­u­als showed re­morse fol­low­ing the in­ci­dent, we hope in the fu­ture they use their pro­file to have a pos­i­tive im­pact on sport and com­mu­ni­ties."

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