In a 2 to 1 decision, USADA has handed Justin Gatlin a 4 year ban effective as of May 25, 2006 and invalidating any races that he competed in following April 22, 2006. The lone dissenter on the panel was Christopher Campbell.

“Increasing Mr. Gatlin’s sanction for his first violation because of his disability is blatant discrimination in violation of the Americans With Disabilities Act,” Campbell wrote.

Gatlin and his lawyer are planning on challenging the ruling and to get his ban reduced to 2 years, even if they have to go through the federal court system in order to do so. His first offense came when he was in college because he of his prescription for Attention Deficit Disorder, which he had been taking since he was a child and that he had stopped taking prior to competition.

If his ban is reduced, then Gatlin will have an opportunity to compete in the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.

(Sources: USADA Press Release [PDF] – ESPN)