Sprinter Brian Mariano, the four-times Dutch 60 metres champion, has been found guilty of attempting to smuggle 720 grammes of cocaine by a court on the Caribbean island of Curaçao.
Mariano was given a one-year jail term, with six months suspended, after the drug was found in his luggage at the island’s airport.
The athlete was not immediately jailed and it is unclear when, or if, he will have to serve his time in prison, Dutch media reported. Curaçao has a serious shortage of prison places.
Mariano’s manager Caroline Feith told website nu.nl she expects the sprinter will take part in athletics meetings this summer.
‘He was not held after the verdict and does not have to report to the court,’ she said. ‘He is in possession of his passport and can do what he likes. And yes, that means he can take part in athletics events.’
Mariano, who denies involvement in drugs smuggling, has not yet signed up for any meetings in the summer season, the Dutch athletics association told nu.nl.