Weekly integrity in sport update from INTERPOL 7-13 December 2015

In the current Weekly Media Recap, we see 11 players expelled by the Football Club Zarya Luhansk for match-fixing in the Ukraine and details of an internal investigation have been submitted to the local Football Federation.

Meanwhile the Professional Players Federation (PPF) published the 2015 review with the aim of educating the UK elite athletes against match fixing.

 

GOOD PRACTICE

United Kingdom

The 2015 review of sports betting integrity education for elite athletes by member player associations has been published by the Professional Players Federation (PPF). The Minister for Sport, Tracey Crouch MP, attended the reception at which it was launched which was itself hosted by Nigel Adams MP. A key part of the review was the discussion of the ongoing need for education against match fixing within the UK to protect the integrity of sports. The PPF, which has a long standing partnership with Ladbrokes, bet365, Betfair and Betway, is helping to deliver this education directly to thousands of players across members’ clubs. One achievement noted in the report is that 3,423 senior players have already received face-t0-face education on sports betting integrity. The Chairman of the PPF, Brendon Batson OBE, said of the review: “The scope of the PPF’s education work continues to grow and develop. Each year we are reaching new sports and new players.” “The funding and expertise from our partnership with bet365, Betfair, Betway and Ladbrokes makes all the difference. This partnership means our athletes are receiving some of the best sports betting integrity education in the world,” he continued.

Source: Sam Cooke, "PPF Review 2015 – Education to combat Match Fixing", 9 December 2015, SBCNEWS, https://www.sbcnews.co.uk/sportsbook/2015/12/09/ppf-review-2015-education-to-combat-match-fixing/

 

LEGISLATION

Australia

Illegal offshore wagering websites should be blocked and those who run them- named on a prohibited provider list, Racing Victoria says. There are growing calls for a national sports integrity commission to probe serious threats to sport. Victoria’s racing integrity commissioner, Sal Perna, is leading the calls from racing and sports bodies to establish one federal authority charged with examining and investigating sports corruption. “We know there is a threat, we know there are criminals interested in corrupting sports overseas and there is no authority here whose single focus is stopping that,” Mr Perna said. As well as a national commission, Racing Victoria wants tougher penalties and better enforcement of federal laws that make it illegal for overseas betting exchanges to aim at Australians. In a submission to a federal review of online gambling laws, Racing Victoria says ending the ban on live betting alone will not stop billions being wagered with dodgy -operators overseas. Racing Victoria proposes reforms including issuing infringement notices to offshore operators, placing their names on a register of prohibited providers, and flagging them on the Customs Movement Alert List so they can be charged if they enter the country. It also suggests internet providers block access to their websites.

Source: Carly Crawford, "Racing Victoria urges reform on illegal offshore betting websites", 9 December 2015, Herald Sun, https://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/victoria/racing-victoria-urges-reform-on-illegal-offshore-betting-websites/news-story/b23971fd544775b790b89fa9ec23197e?nk=c0979b55c609dad43ab5b90f72137a88-1450087633

 

ODDS AND ENDS

Malta

Federbet are taking the Malta FA and Franz Tabone, its integrity officer, to court over allegations contained in a statement issued by the Maltese governing body of football last Friday, the Belgium-based betting-monitoring company said yesterday. In its statement, the MFA described claims that match-fixing is widespread in Maltese football, made last June by Federbet and Belgian MEP Marc Tarabella at the European Parliament, as baseless and motivated by the company’s commercial interests. The MFA released its statement after Tabone had discussed the allegations with MEP Tarabella and Francesco Baranca, the secretary general of Federbet, in Brussels last Wednesday. The meeting was organised by Maltese MEP Therese Comodini Cachia. “The data presented by Federbet about the level of corruption in the Maltese league are based on a Federbet report presented to the EU Parliament in June 2015.

Source: AP, "Federbet to sue Malta FA", 8 December 2015, Timesofmalta.com, https://www.timesofmalta.com/articles/view/20151208/football/Federbet-to-sue-Malta-FA.595011

Mexico

Mexico narrowly avoided a threat of suspension from next year’s Rio Olympics, after the International Olympic Committee (IOC) found no evidence of political interference with its sport federations. There were fears the country might be banned from competing at the Games following allegations the government could intervene in the running of some national federations amid a lack of transparency and missing public funds. The IOC has always opposed political interference and maintains that governments should respect the autonomy of the Olympic movement. Elsewhere, the IOC executive board approved a code of guidelines designed to tackle manipulation in sports, like match-fixing, as they discussed issues of ethics and governance. “We have called on and we expect all sports organizations to follow this route,” said IOC president Thomas Bach, though specific details of the guidelines were not released. IOC spokesperson Mark Adams said the code would ensure such rules are standardised across all sport disciplines. He added all sports organisations were encouraged to work with judges and referees to uphold the rules.

Source: Hugo Lowell, "Mexico ban at Rio Olympics now unlikely, says IOC", 9 December 2015, Euronews, https://www.euronews.com/2015/12/09/mexico-ban-at-rio-olympics-now-unlikely-says-ioc/

 

SENTENCES/SANCTIONS

Ukraine

Ukraine championship side Zarya Luhansk have expelled 11 players from their under-19 team for match-fixing, officials said. All but one of those expelled had admitted wrongdoing, said the club, adding that it had passed details of its internal investigation into the match-fixing to the Ukraine Football Federation. "We have done our job and applied our sports punishment to them," Serhiy Rafailov, general manager of FC Zarya, was quoted as saying by the ProFootball television programme which released the names of the expelled players on Sunday. "Most important is to get support from the football authorities so that these players do not emerge in other places," he added. Rafailov said one of the players had admitted receiving 14,000 UAH ($602.15) for fixing a game against Metalist, $1,000 for a game against FC Shakhtar and $700 against FC Chornomorets last season. ($1 = 23.2500 hryvnias).

Source: AP, "Ukraine's Zarya expel youth players for match-fixing", 7 December 2015, Dailymail.co.uk, https://www.dailymail.co.uk/wires/reuters/article-3349175/Ukraines-Zarya-expel-youth-players-match-fixing.html

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