INTERPOL Integrity in Sport Bi-Weekly Bulletin - 30 April 2019 - 20 May 2019

The Tennis Integrity Unit (TIU) suspended and fined a Colombian tennis coach after being found guilty to have traded wild cards in return for payment at a number of tennis tournaments in 2017. The TIU found an Egyptian tennis player guilty of three charges, including attempting to contrive the outcome of a match, failing to report a corrupt approach and failing to disclose knowledge of the corrupt activity of another party. Another Egyptian tennis player has received a suspended sentence and fine after being found guilty of failing to report corrupt approaches to the TIU.

The Ghana Football Association (GFA) temporarily suspended three referees due to bribery allegations. The Bulgarian Football Union (BFU) decided to throw out club Vereya of their domestic league after repeated warnings from Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) over suspected match-fixing.

Police in Hong Kong (China) arrested 135 individuals during raids on illegal gambling dens. In China, police dismantled a $312 million gambling ring that was associated with a betting website in the Philippines.

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) successfully retrieved 2,262 samples from the Moscow Laboratory. The International Cycling Union (UCI) confirmed that a Slovenian rider has been suspended for potential doping violations along with other cyclists from Slovenia, Italy and Croatia who have been provisionally suspended as part of Operation Aderlass doping inquiry.

The Council of Europe Convention on the Manipulation of Sports Competitions, also known as the Macolin Convention, will enter into force on 1 September. Switzerland recently became the fifth Council of Europe (CoE) member state to ratify the convention – following Norway, Portugal, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine – triggering its entry into force.

With Japan set to host major sports events such as the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games and the 2019 Rugby World Cup, INTERPOL and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) have organized an event (15-16 May 2019) on protecting the integrity of sports where more than 80 representatives from Japanese law enforcement, government, sports federations, the Japanese Olympic Committee, the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee and the Olympic movement were present.

We welcome submissions on best practices, major developments, new trends and relevant articles for publication in the bulletin.

The next bi-weekly bulletin will be circulated on Monday, 3 June 2019.

SENTENCES/SANCTIONS

Bulgaria

Bulgarian FA relegates Vereya from top flight over persistent match-fixing alerts

May 8 – Bulgarian top-flight club Vereya have been thrown out of their domestic league after repeated warnings from UEFA over suspected match-fixing. The Bulgarian Football Union (BFU) said it took the decision after receiving new alerts from UEFA’s integrity office in recent months, despite fining Vereya over potential match manipulation in February. Vereyua finished sixth last season but are currently bottom of the league facing relegation. “The BFU received signals from UEFA for unregulated financing of Vereya by Chinese citizens associated with international trade unions for manipulation of football matches in Europe and the world, as well as citizens of the former CIS (the Commonwealth of Independent States of 11 ex-Soviet states) investigated for manipulation of football matches,” the BFU said in a statement. The club’s previous results will be allowed to stand but their remaining games will be recorded as 0-3 losses.

Source: Andrew Warshaw, 8 May 2019, Inside World Football

Football

https://www.insideworldfootball.com/2019/05/08/bulgarian-fa-relegates-vereya-top-flight-persistent-match-fixing-alerts/

Colombia

Tennis coach Miguel Tobon suspended and fined for selling wild cards

Tennis coach Miguel Tobon has been suspended for 12 months and fined $20,000 after being found to have traded wild cards in return for payment at a number of tennis tournaments staged in 2017.

Mr Tobon, a former professional tennis player and coach from Colombia, was found guilty of negotiating to sell, or attempting to sell, wild cards for singles and doubles events to six individuals.

These breaches of the Tennis Anti-Corruption Program took place at a number of ATP Challenger events played in Colombia during 2017. These included the Claro Open in Floridablanca, the Milo Open in Bogota and the Milo Open in Cali.

Mr Tobon was found to have entered into an agreement with an individual which involved him promoting tennis events in Colombia, for which he received wild cards at those tournaments.

He committed a further offence by failing to co-operate with a Tennis Integrity Unit investigation, by refusing to supply his mobile phone for analysis.

The case was considered by independent Anti-Corruption Hearing Officer Prof Richard McLaren, who after finding Mr Tobon guilty of all charges imposed the suspension and fine, which are both effective from 17 May 2019.

In addition to the $20,000 fine AHO McLaren ordered Mr Tobon to pay a further $6,000 as representative of the monies he received from the sale of wild cards.

The 12 months suspension means that he is ineligible to coach or attend any sanctioned event organised or recognised by the governing bodies of the sport for the duration of the ban.

The breaches of the Tennis Anti-Corruption Program Mr Tobon has been sanctioned for are Sections:

D.1.d. No Covered Person shall, directly or indirectly, contrive or attempt to contrive the outcome or any other aspect of any Event.

D.1.j. No Covered Person shall, directly or indirectly, offer or provide any money, benefit or Consideration to any Tournament Support Personnel in exchange for any information or benefit relating to a tournament.

F.2.b. All Covered Persons must co-operate fully with investigations conducted by the TIU including giving evidence at hearings, if requested. No Covered Person shall tamper with or destroy any evidence or other information related to any Corruption Offense.

The Tennis Integrity Unit is an initiative of the Grand Slam Board, the International Tennis Federation, the ATP and the WTA, who are jointly committed to a zero tolerance approach to corruption in tennis.

Source: 18 May 2019, Tennis Integrity Unit

Tennis

https://www.tennisintegrityunit.com/media-releases/tennis-coach-miguel-tobon-suspended-and-fined-selling-wild-cards

Egypt

Issam Taweel found guilty of match-fixing offences by independent Anti-Corruption Hearing Officer

Issam Taweel found guilty of match-fixing offences by independent Anti-Corruption Hearing Officer.

Egyptian tennis player Issam Taweel has been found guilty of match-fixing and other corruption offences under the Tennis Anti-Corruption Program (TACP).

Mr Taweel, 29, was found guilty of three charges, including attempting to contrive the outcome of a match, failing to report a corrupt approach and failing to disclose knowledge of the corrupt activity of another party.

Independent Anti-Corruption Hearing Officer (AHO) Jane Mulcahy QC considered the case at a Hearing held in London on 26 February 2019, following an investigation by the Tennis Integrity Unit.

Having been found guilty of all charges, the player will be sanctioned at a future date to be determined by AHO Mulcahy. Details of the Decision on disciplinary sanctions will be made public when received.

Until that time Mr Taweel has been provisionally suspended and is prohibited from competing in or attending any event sanctioned or authorised by the governing bodies of tennis.

He is currently ranked 1175 in ITF World Tennis Tour singles and has no ATP ranking.

The breaches of the TACP which he has been found guilty of are:

Section D.1.d: - No Covered Person shall, directly or indirectly, contrive or attempt to contrive the outcome or any other aspect of any Event.

Section D.2.a.i.- In the event any Player is approached by any person who offers or provides any type of money, benefit or Consideration to a Player to (i) influence the outcome or any other aspect of any Event, or (ii) provide Inside Information, it shall be the Player's obligation to report such incident to the TIU as soon as possible.

Section D.2.a.ii - In the event any Player knows or suspects that any other Covered Person or other individual has committed a Corruption Offense, it shall be the Player's obligation to report such knowledge or suspicion to the TIU as soon as possible.

Source: 3 May 2019, Tennis Integrity Unit

Tennis

https://www.tennisintegrityunit.com/media-releases/issam-taweel-found-guilty-match-fixing-offences-independent-anti-corruption-hearing-officer

Egypt

Suspended sentence and fine for Mohamed Safwat after failing to report corrupt approaches to the Tennis Integrity Unit

Suspended sentence and fine for Mohamed Safwat after failing to report corrupt approaches to the Tennis Integrity Unit.

Egyptian tennis player Mohamed Safwat has received a suspended sentence and fine after being found guilty of failing to report corrupt approaches to the Tennis Integrity Unit (TIU).

An independent Anti-Corruption Hearing held in London on 20 and 21 December 2018 found that the 28-year old received a number of corrupt approaches in 2015, but failed to report them to the TIU, as required by the Tennis Anti-Corruption Program (TACP). He was also found guilty of a further charge of failing to report knowledge or suspicion of corruption offences by another party.

As a result, independent Anti-Corruption Hearing Officer Jane Mulcahy QC today imposed a suspended sentence of six months and a fine of $5,000, of which $4,000 is suspended on the basis that no further breaches of the TACP are committed.

Mr Safwat can continue to play professional tennis. He is currently ranked 233 in ATP singles and has a career high of 163 achieved in June 2018.

The breaches of the TACP he has been found guilty of are:

D.2.a.i: “In the event any Player is approached by any person who offers or provides any type of money, benefit or Consideration to a Player to (i) influence the outcome or any other aspect of any Event, or (ii) provide Inside Information, it shall be the Player’s obligation to report such incident to the TIU as soon as possible.

D.2.a.ii: “In the event any Player knows or suspects that any other Covered Person or other individual has committed a Corruption Offense, it shall be the Player’s obligation to report such knowledge or suspicion to the TIU as soon as possible.

Source: 3 May 2019, Tennis Integrity Unit

Tennis

https://www.tennisintegrityunit.com/media-releases/suspended-sentence-and-fine-mohamed-safwat-after-failing-report-corrupt-approaches-tennis-integrity-unit

France & Algeria

Championnat d'Algérie : sept Français arrêtés pour des paris suspects

Dans le cadre d'une enquête liée à un match du Championnat algérien, sept personnes ont été arrêtés dans l'est de la France, mardi matin. C'est une première en France. Sept personnes ont été interpellées, mardi matin, en Moselle, par des policiers du service central des courses et jeux (SCCJ) dans le cadre d'une enquête sur des paris suspects pris en France et liés à une rencontre de Ligue 1 algérienne. Cinq d'entre elles ont été placées en garde à vue et deux autres ont été entendues en audition libre. La genèse de l'affaire remonte au 12 mai 2018. À l'époque, l'équipe du DRB Tadjenanet, menacée de relégation, recevait l'ES Sétif, champion d'Algérie en titre mais classé en milieu de tableau, pour le compte de la 29e et avant-dernière journée de Championnat. Le petit club de la ville située à 300 km à l'est d'Alger fait tomber [...]

Source: Grégoire Fleurot et Alban Traquet, 14 May 2019, L'Equipe

Ghana

Ghana FA suspends three referees after Ashanti Gold vs. Kotoko clash

Match-fixing made the front page once more this week in the wake of the Miners and Porcupine Warriors meeting in Obuasi. The Ghana Football Association (GFA) has announced its decision to temporarily suspend the three officials which handled Ashanti Gold vs. Asante Kotoko Special Competition match played in Obuasi on May 12. AshGold emerged the winner by a lone goal, but reports in the media alleged that an individual made attempts to influence the outcome of the match in favour the Kumasi-based side.

The Normalisation Committee of the Ghana Football Association has ordered a temporary suspension of referees Ali Alhassan, Mustapha Abdulai and Mohammed Issahaku from officiating any Ghana FA official match with immediate effect,” the NC said in a statement on Friday.

This decision has become necessary due to the bribery allegation levelled against you after officiating a Day Eleven match between AshantiGold SC and Asante Kotoko SC played on Sunday, 12 May, 2019 at the Len Clay Stadium.

Kotoko are second in Zone A with 14 points, two behind leaders Medeama, while AshGold are fourth with 11 points. The Special Competition enters matchday 13 this weekend.

Source: 17 May 2019, Goal.com

https://www.goal.com/en/news/ghana-fa-suspends-three-referees-after-ashanti-gold-vs/q1t4uwsz6rnc15q8x6fu5j90k

BETTING

Hong Kong

Triad-linked gambling dens in Hong Kong smashed in citywide police operation

Hong Kong police have arrested 135 people, including two 15-year-old students, during citywide raids on illegal gambling dens. Officers said the venues, largely clustered around Mong Kok and Sham Shui Po, were also used to peddle drugs and offer high-interest loans. Anti-triad officers led the operation, code-named Wisebold, on Friday evening. They swooped on a dozen game centres and 51 illegal gambling dens across the city, seizing 153 arcade machines, including fishing games and slot machines.

Superintendent Chung Lai-yee from the Organised Crime and Triad Bureau said the establishments, mostly controlled by triads, operated 24 hours and could make tens of thousands of dollars each per day. First-time customers might find it very easy to win and redeem a lot of cash. But soon the culprits deliberately altered the machines’ operation to make the games a lot more difficult. This hooked the gamblers and made them addicted to gambling. They are all losers at the end

Before playing on the machines, gamblers had to buy cards, which recorded their scores. They could win points in each game but, unlike at other arcades, the points could be exchanged for cash, which is illegal. As well as pocketing money lost on the games, the operators took a 10 per cent cut of winnings redeemed.

First-time customers might find it very easy to win and redeem a lot of cash. But soon the culprits deliberately altered the machines’ operation to make the games a lot more difficult,” Chung said. “This hooked the gamblers and made them addicted to gambling. They are all losers at the end.”

The bureau said triads often rented units in industrial buildings or old buildings on short-term lets and turned them into illegal dens. They served regular clients, and did not admit anyone they did not know. The 98 men and 37 women aged 15 to 76, some with triad backgrounds, were arrested for gambling offences. The two 15-year-old students were found to be customers. Also among those arrested were seven mainland Chinese with two-way permits – which allow them to enter Hong Kong but not work

– and 15 people from other countries including India, Pakistan, Thailand, the Philippines and Bangladesh, who did not have Hong Kong ID cards. Chung said they worked at the centres, having been targeted because they were jobless and eager to earn quick cash.

Chief Inspector Tsang Ting-pan from Kowloon East Regional Anti-Triad Unit said gangsters also sold drugs and offered high-interest loans in the dens.

They first offered gamblers free drugs, such as Ice, cocaine and cannabis, to attract them to the den,” Tsang said. “This turned gamblers into drug addicts. The den then sold drugs to them to lure them to stay on the premises to gamble. When gamblers lost money, they borrowed from loan sharks.

Officers also seized HK$650,000 (US$83,000) in cash and 15 top-up machines in the operation, which was still ongoing. Chung said more arrests could follow.

In Hong Kong, operating a gambling establishment carries a maximum penalty of seven years in jail and a HK$5 million fine.

Gambling in an illegal establishment carries a maximum penalty of nine months in jail and a HK$30,000 fine.

Source: Christy Leung, 18 May 2019, Yahoo! Sports

https://sg.news.yahoo.com/triad-linked-gambling-dens-hong-121352274.html?guccounter=1&guce_referrer=aHR0cHM6Ly93d3cuZ29vZ2xlLmNvbS8&guce_referrer_sig=AQAAAHj8RjbPY5VuVNJ3pGm3CZDrrjKYT8q0ArHV-5_g6ti5bGcnmMl9iJ_vIpWy8msv2gSnvY1JwsShVlgmcGd2KMKMS-PhgtIgvDz5bXotTCp-2nTJa55MbfNHYu-DUVJHUoemEitnMpEI17BdTfm4EtmLq4YJHC20eks3M1HgqBQg

Philippines

China Online Gambling Operation with Ties to Philippines Leads to Seven Arrests

Police broke up a $312 million gambling ring recently working out of China’s Anhui Province that was associated with a sports betting website based in the Philippines. Approximately 10,000 people signed up or used the gaming site since 2016, according to Xinhua news. So far, seven suspects were arrested by authorities investigating the online scheme.

Two defendants were sentenced, with one ordered to spend three years in prison and the second to spend three years and two months incarcerated. The five other suspects will appear in court and face sentencing later. The cross-border gambling ring was revealed in 2018 after a gambler told police in Anhui’s Susong County he lost approximately 700,000 yuan (US $102,578) from gaming on the website.

Philippines is known for its “illegal” gambling. Efforts — led by Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte’s law and gaming enforcement agencies — continue to scrutinize the rings. Duterte has had a contentious relationship with the gaming industry since taking office in June 2016. He initially viewed gambling as sinister. In 2016, the president directed law enforcement to investigate underground gambling syndicates. Last October, police cracked down once again on unlicensed online gambling operations.

Nationwide, government officials claim many gaming dens in the country fail to obtain licenses from the Philippines Gaming and Amusement Corporation (PAGCOR) to operate offshore networks.

More than 170 alleged illegal internet gaming enterprises have been raided by federal law enforcement agencies in the Philippines over the last two years. Some 100,000 Chinese foreigners also are in the Philippines helping to facilitate the illegal enterprises, authorities claim, with most of the operations targeting the Chinese market. [...]

Source: Ed Silverstein, 9 May 2019, Casino.org

https://www.casino.org/news/china-online-gambling-operation-with-ties-to-philippines-leads-to-seven-arrests

DOPING

Russia

WADA successfully retrieves samples from Moscow Laboratory

Since January’s retrieval by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) of the analytical data generated by the former Moscow Laboratory in Russia, WADA Intelligence and Investigations (I&I) has been working on a mission to extract all relevant samples still contained within the laboratory.

WADA can confirm that a five-person team has successfully retrieved 2,262 samples from the laboratory, which had been split into A and B samples and contained within 4,524 collection bottles. The samples have now been taken out of Moscow and are on their way to a WADA-accredited laboratory outside of Russia. Importantly, all samples targeted by I&I in advance of the mission were successfully located and extracted.

WADA Director of I&I Gunter Younger, who is leading the process, said: “WADA Intelligence and Investigations is pleased to be continuing to make progress in this complex and difficult case. Extracting the required samples from the laboratory is another step forward. These samples will be used to strengthen cases against those who may have cheated and may exonerate athletes who have not committed an anti-doping rule violation.

In removing the bottles, as a precaution we decided to take any and all samples that corresponded to data in the Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) database that was even remotely anomalous, even where an anti-doping rule violation (ADRV) was not suspected. We can therefore proceed to the next phase and support the various International Federations (IFs) and other Anti-Doping Organizations to bring cases forward.

In parallel, the authentication process of the Moscow data is close to completion. In early May, a progress report from that process will be sent to the independent Compliance Review Committee – which has received updates from WADA I&I every two weeks since the data was extracted in January – and an update will be presented at the next meetings of WADA’s Executive Committee and Foundation Board on 15 and 16 May, respectively.

Meanwhile, the process continues as I&I investigators identify all available evidence for each case, including ordering further sample analysis, where appropriate. In due course, the relevant IFs will be presented with evidentiary packages, which they will assess with the view to taking the cases forward as ADRVs. In cases where IFs choose not to take action, WADA will review the facts, discuss with the relevant IF and reserves the right to bring them forward to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

Last week, WADA held a conference call with a number of IFs outlining the next steps and answering any questions they might have. Similar conference calls have also been held with athletes and with National Anti-Doping Organizations (NADOs).

Background: The successful data and sample retrieval came about as a result of the 20 September 2018 decision of WADA’s Executive Committee to reinstate the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA), under strict conditions, to the list of World Anti-Doping Code-compliant Signatories. Under the terms of that decision, the Russian authorities were required to provide the data while also agreeing that any samples required by WADA for re-analysis would be made available by 30 June 2019. The samples had been stored and sealed off as part of a federal investigation being carried out by Russian authorities.

Further information: WADA has produced a flowchart that summarizes the three phases of the RUSADA Compliance Process and has compiled a document that summarizes the "Progress of the Anti-Doping System in Light of the Russian Doping Crisis".

Source: 30 April 2019, World Anti-Doping Agency

https://www.wada-ama.org/en/media/news/2019-04/wada-successfully-retrieves-samples-from-moscow-laboratory

Slovenia

Dopage : la Slovénie dans l’œil du cyclone « Aderlass »

Deux cyclistes professionnels slovènes ont été suspendus. Ils sont soupçonnés d’avoir bénéficié du réseau de dopage sanguin démantelé en Allemagne.

Y a-t-il quelque chose de « pourri » dans le cyclisme de Slovénie ? Tous les regards sont en tout cas tournés vers la petite république adriatique depuis la révélation de l’implication d’un cycliste et d’un ancien cycliste slovènes dans l’opération « Aderlass », cette enquête de la police allemande sur un réseau de dopage sanguin organisé.

Mardi 15 mai, l’Union cycliste internationale (UCI) a suspendu à titre provisoire le coureur Kristjan Koren et l’ancien coureur, désormais directeur sportif, Borut Bozic, de l’équipe Bahreïn-Merida. Ils sont accusés par le médecin au centre de l’enquête, l’Allemand Mark Schmidt, d’avoir bénéficié d’auto-transfusions en 2012 et 2013.

Le Croate Kristijan Durasek est également visé, sur une période plus récente. Né à Varazdin, à 30 kilomètres de la frontière slovène, il est proche de nombreux cyclistes slovènes, lui qui est passé par deux équipes amateures du pays : Perutnina Ptuj (2006-2008) et Adria Mobil (2012).

Ces dernières années, le cyclisme slovène a enregistré un grand nombre de cas positifs. Selon notre recensement, 8 des 19 coureurs slovènes ayant évolué dans le World Tour (la première division du cyclisme) depuis dix ans ont été suspendus pour dopage, parfois avant ou après leur passage dans l’élite du cyclisme. Soit 42 % d’entre eux, une proportion énorme au regard de la faible efficacité de la lutte antidopage.

  • Malheureusement, nous avons eu beaucoup de cas positifs. C’est sans doute en raison de la proximité avec l’Italie, par laquelle beaucoup de cyclistes sont passés, estime Janko Dvorsak, président de l’agence antidopage slovène. Ce qui compte, ce n’est pas le pays d’où vous venez mais l’équipe dans laquelle vous évoluez. »

Ce qui était vrai dans les années 2000, quand beaucoup de coureurs slovènes des équipes italiennes étaient cités dans des affaires de dopage, n’est plus forcément le cas. Ces dernières années, les Slovènes débusqués par la lutte antidopage l’ont été aussi bien dans des équipes slovènes qu’italienne, française, américaine ou espagnole.

Le prédécesseur de Mark Schmidt s’alimentait en Slovénie

Frontalière de pays disposant d’une loi antidopage solide - Autriche et Italie -, la Slovénie était considérée, il y a une dizaine d’années, comme un havre de paix pour les dopés sur le sol européen.

Stefan Matschiner est l’homme qui a cédé son arsenal du parfait dopeur à l’Allemand Mark Schmidt. Jusqu’en 2008, il a dirigé un trafic de dopage sanguin qui lui a valu une condamnation en Autriche en 2010.

Lorsqu’il a appris le démantèlement du réseau de Mark Schmidt, il s’est interrogé, dans le journal local Nachrichten : « Il faut être stupide pour faire cela en Autriche, compte-tenu de la rigidité de la loi anti-dopage ici. On peut le faire partout ailleurs, comme en Slovénie où il ne se passe sans doute rien. »

Lui-même s’était procuré en Slovénie les ampoules de DynEPO pour ses athlètes et la centrifugeuse indispensable à son trafic de poches de sang, comme il l’a raconté dans son livre-confession en 2011 (« Grenzwertig, Aus dem Leben eines Dopingdealers », Riva, 2011, non traduit). Il en était un jour revenu avec 180 000 unités de DynEPO dans le coffre, suffisant pour alimenter toute une équipe cycliste sur une course de trois semaines.

C’est aussi un ancien athlète slovène qui alimentait en DynEPO les cyclistes de l’équipe Rabobank, Michael Boogerd et Thomas Dekker, selon le témoignage de ce dernier dans son livre « The Descent » (Ebury Publications, 2017, non traduit). « Nous n’étions pas assez stricts »

Depuis, les temps ont changé, veut croire Janko Dvorsak. « Nous n’étions pas assez stricts. Après 2009, le comité olympique a créé un département antidopage. Depuis 2014, il y a une véritable agence antidopage indépendante. »

Cette dernière, dotée d’un budget de 400 000 euros par an, compte sur la Fondation Antidopage du Cyclisme (CADF), agence indépendante de l’Union cycliste internationale, pour contrôler ses coureurs cyclistes évoluant au plus haut niveau.

En ce qui concerne les trafics, toutefois, elle doit compter sur la police locale, qui a d’autres priorités. La loi slovène criminalise le trafic de produits dopants ou l’aide au dopage, mais pas des méthodes de dopage comme les transfusions sanguines.

L’agence antidopage slovène n’a jamais eu à connaître l’implication de sportifs nationaux dans l’affaire « Aderlass », l’enquête étant menée strictement par les autorités policières.

Chez les autorités de la lutte antidopage, on émet de sérieux doutes sur la volonté de la police slovène de faire le ménage chez elle.

Selon le témoignage de l’ancien coureur allemand Danilo Hondo fait à la chaîne publique ARD, Mark Schmidt a aussi cherché à échapper à la surveillance de la police autrichienne en exploitant les lacunes policières en ex-Yougoslavie : c’est avec un téléphone portable « slovène ou croate » que Hondo coordonnait l’agenda des prélèvements de sang et des réinfusions avec le docteur Schmidt. [...]

Source: 16 May 2019, Le Monde

Cycling

https://www.lemonde.fr/sport/article/2019/05/16/dopage-la-slovenie-dans-l-il-du-cyclone-aderlass_5462878_3242.html

eDoping & eSports

The concept of eDoping in eSports - cyber security as a safety measure, enforcement and sanctions in case of non-compliance

How to limit the risk of eDoping and avoid potential sanctions and enforcements in eSports? What solutions shall be adopted in terms of cybersecurity?

The eSports market has grown at a tremendous pace over the past few years becoming a half billion dollar industry. Competition between players is at the highest levels and marginal gains can make the difference between winning and losing. Cheating is therefore a high temptation for many players.

Some of such players are going for “eDoping”. This is not the classic doping to strengthen physical and concentrations potential, but it refers to the fixing of the machines used for the tournaments.

eDoping is in fact the manipulation of either software or hardware to give the player a specific advantage within the game. During the last years in fact, not only game software have been modified, but also keyboards or mouse settings have been altered to perform a series of actions with a single click. However, there are also doping activities that do not require any form of modification. For instance the “stream sniping”, requires that players watch live broadcast of the match in which he/she is currently playing to get an insight into the opponent. As it this was not enough, eSports are also not exempted from cyber-attacks. There have even been distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks in which a network or a specific player where players’ acts are so overwhelmed that they are forced to slow down or shut down.

And with technology constantly advancing, it’s a never-ending battle which require commitment on all fronts.

Prevention from eDoping: adoption of a cybersecurity system

One way to protect games and tournaments from eDoping is cybersecurity. In fact, it comes as no surprise, that the most effective weapon against technology threats is technology itself.

During the years, game publishers and tournament organizations have implemented technical measures to detect and prevent eDoping as well as to punish those who employ such means. For instance, some entities have developed tools to determine whether matches on their platforms are manipulated, while others have elaborated the anti-cheat system that detect any modification done to the game’s files. The same level of security is also applied to tournaments, where the game equipment is owned, controlled and provided by the tournament organizer or where the player is authorized to use its own peripherals, the latter are controlled on the functionality of such devices.

In this context, it is essential for companies within the eSports industry to build cyber resilience systems together with incident response schemes able to remediate adverse impacts on the business and to protect the brand reputation, as well as post-incident remediation plan which can mitigate the impact from any claim or other liabilities.

But cybersecurity is not only a technical issue. If there are no organizational measures aimed at reducing the risk of cyber-attacks, no technical measure would be sufficient. Human errors are the main source of cyber-attacks, but the lack of internal organizational controls enable such human errors to actually become a risk of the eSports industry.

Persecution of eDoping activities: enforcement and sanctions

When a cybersecurity system is not adopted or does not work properly, eDoping can result in numerous consequences for both the accused player as well as the team for which the player operates for.

In fact, eDoping activities can result in the ban of players (or even the team) from a tournament or from the relevant league, with heavy consequences from an economic standpoint. Sponsorship contracts can therefore be immediately terminated with an economic loss not only for the sponsor, but also for tournament organizations and players team companies.

At the same time, in case eDoping is considered as a criminal offence (for instance a cybercrime), the issue could be brought in front of criminal courts with consequences also from a reputational point of view. It comes as no surprise that bans and fines – known to be considered as a way to discourage illicit behavior – might also apply.

With this regard, it is interesting to consider that no specific independent authority/regulator has been identified, so that eSports tournaments are usually self-regulating. For instance, FIFA – for its e-football events and tournaments – developed a single global regulatory body in order to ensure the quality of tournaments and the competition in the play and the consistency in rules and code of conducts across different games.

In light of the above, every day the need for a regulation on eSports and consequently against eDoping activities is more pressing. With this regard some experts are pushing towards a global eSports regulation which would require the identification of sanctions applicable on players across all games and countries in order to prevent the cheating player from participating in other tournaments.

It is therefore clear that eSports tournaments have major potentials, but need to deal with considerable attention from the security standpoint also in order to avoid the results deriving from eDoping.

Source: 1 May 2019, Lexology

eSports

https://www.lexology.com/library/detail.aspx?g=b3abb0aa-72da-4d26-9ad8-d5ce8204d7c1

INTEGRITY IN SPORT EVENTS

Japan

INTERPOL and IOC: shaping a global network on sports integrity

TOKYO, Japan – With Japan set to host major sports events such as the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games and the 2019 Rugby World Cup, INTERPOL and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) have organized a workshop and training on protecting the integrity of sports.

The two-day event (15 and 16 May) brought together more than 80 representatives from Japanese law enforcement, government, sports federations, the Japanese Olympic Committee, the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee and the Olympic movement.

International experts from the UNODC, World Rugby and Sportradar joined IOC Member Morinari Watanabe and IOC Chief Ethics and Compliance Officer Pâquerette Girard-Zappelli as well as INTERPOL officers at the event.

The role of existing legislation, international instruments and best practices in protecting major sport events from competition manipulation, and the impact of global betting developments on sport were high on the agenda.

With organized crime networks increasingly profiting from the manipulation of sports competitions, INTERPOL also underlined the role of its Match-Fixing Task Force in protecting the integrity of sports.

Participants heard how an INTERPOL Major Event Support Team (IMEST) can be deployed to assist member countries prepare, coordinate and implement security arrangements for major international events.

The workshop was followed by an investigators training session for sports governing bodies and law enforcement agencies tasked with investigating allegations, suspicions or reports related to the manipulation of a sports competition and other breaches of sports integrity.

The training included practical scenario-based exercises designed to enhance relevant skills and assist in applying learning to the work environment. It was based on the INTERPOL-IOC Handbook on Conducting Fact-Finding Inquiries into Breaches of Sports Integrity.

Through cooperation and information sharing, a key objective of such training is for stakeholders in law enforcement, government and sports to come together and shape a global network to tackle competition manipulation and protect the integrity of major international sports events.

INTERPOL and the IOC recently expanded their joint global capacity-building and training programme until 2021 to protect the integrity of sports.

Source: 17 May 2019, INTERPOL

https://www.interpol.int/News-and-Events/News/2019/INTERPOL-and-IOC-shaping-a-global-network-on-sports-integrity

MATCH FIXING

United Kingdom

Cricket's anti-corruption police warn suspected fixers against travelling to World Cup

Cricket’s anti-corruption police have taken the unique step of warning suspected fixers against travelling to England for the World Cup as they launch their biggest ever protection operation.

As well as posting anti-corruption officers with each of the ten teams for the first time, the International Cricket Council has also used legal warnings to persuade known corrupters not to travel to the tournament and have also passed on their details to the United Kingdom’s National Crime Agency.

In addition to the ten officers billeted with the teams, the anti-corruption unit will also have two investigators and one evidence analyst on duty during the 48 match, six and a half week tournament which starts when England play South Africa at the Oval on May 27.

The ICC has contacted the suspected corrupters through solicitors and warned them they will be thrown out of grounds if they are spotted at a match.

Next week the ICC will start briefing the playing squads and backroom teams showing them images of known corrupters so they can report them to the authorities. The ICC are confident the World Cup will be clean and poses a low risk due to the extra security put in place.

However, it would be hugely damaging for the game if its principal white ball event, which attracted a broadcast audience of 2.2billion for the 2011 final alone, were to be hit by a fixing scandal or sting.

Badly run events attract the corrupters and they look for vulnerabilities in events and players but the World Cup is highly organised, well run, well governed and the players are well protected so we expect it to be clean,” Alex Marshall, the general manager of the ICC’s anti-corruption unit, told Telegraph Sport.

We will be at the hotels, at the grounds, we be available to the players all the time and we have good relationships with all the squads. The team management and coaches are well briefed on the current threats so in terms of having a strong structure, the tournament is in a good place

“But the risk is the corrupters know this is a massively high yield if they were to succeed however their chances of succeeding are very low and it is very risky. Whereas if they went for a chaotic T20 competition somewhere else then the risks to them would be much lower and they are more likely to succeed, even though the yield would not be as high. Overall we are expecting to have a very low profile throughout the World Cup unless something occurs.

The ICC’s focus these days has shifted from cricketers to the corrupters themselves, largely trying to prevent fixing from happening in the first place by blocking access to playing staff and educating them about the methods of approach used by bookies and corrupt gangs.

They have fewer concerns about international cricket these days than in the past and are confident it is clean with the fixers now concentrating on the many Twenty20 leagues springing up around the world where anti-corruption procedures can be flimsy, or non-existent, and access to players relatively straightforward.

The ICC is still locked in a deep investigation into corruption allegations within Sri Lankan cricket that is expecting to drag on until the end of the year.

Last week the ICC charged the Sri Lankan team analyst with corruption offences, after he was reported to the board by the government’s sports minister. More charges against different individuals are expected later this summer.

Source: Nick Hoult, 18 May 2019, The Telepgraph

Cricket

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/cricket/2019/05/18/crickets-anti-corruption-policewarn-suspected-fixers-against/

POLICY

Council of Europe

Ground-breaking international treaty on match-fixing to enter into force in September

The Council of Europe Convention on the Manipulation of Sports Competitions, also known as the Macolin Convention, will enter into force on 1 September.

Switzerland today became the fifth Council of Europe member state to ratify the convention – following Norway, Portugal, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine – triggering its entry into force.

The entry into force of the Macolin Convention is good news for everyone who values fair play and integrity in sport,” said Council of Europe Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland.

The convention is a major step forward in the fight against corruption in sport and has received firm backing from major sports organisations and partners including FIFA and UEFA. I urge all of our member states, and countries around the world, to sign and ratify the convention as soon as possible.

Launched in 2014, the Macolin Convention is the only legally-binding international treaty promoting global co-operation to tackle the manipulation of sports competitions.

Source: 16 May 2019, Council of Europe

https://www.coe.int/en/web/portal/-/ground-breaking-international-treaty-on-match-fixing-to-enter-into-force-in-september

CORRUPTION

Switzerland

Swiss attorney general investigated over handling FIFA case

BERN, Switzerland — Switzerland's attorney general is the subject of a disciplinary case related to his handling of a four-year investigation of FIFA that involves 25 criminal proceedings.

The federal office overseeing the work of chief prosecutor Michael Lauber said Friday it is examining possible violations of his duties in the FIFA case. It began as an investigation into suspected money laundering in World Cup bidding.

The inquiry puts Lauber at risk of being removed from office while he seeks a new four-year term from Swiss lawmakers.

"It's my duty to tell the truth and maintain my candidature," he said at a news conference held close to Switzerland's parliament. "If you are a prosecutor you have to be able to handle criticism."

Lauber must answer for an undeclared third meeting he had with FIFA president Gianni Infantino in 2017, which he acknowledged Friday had been his responsibility to remember.

Two meetings in 2016 were revealed last November in the Football Leaks series of reports based on confidential documents and emails obtained from soccer officials, clubs and organizations.

Infantino is not publicly suspected of wrongdoing, and FIFA has maintained its status as a victim of sweeping Swiss and American federal investigations into corruption in international soccer that were revealed in May 2015.

Swiss criminal proceedings are, however, open against former FIFA president Sepp Blatter, 2006 World Cup organizer Franz Beckenbauer, and Nasser al-Khelaifi, a Qatari television executive who is also president of French champion Paris Saint-Germain. They deny wrongdoing and have not been charged.

Lauber said in November his office was "under attack every day" by defense lawyers using the Football Leaks reports to question the integrity of his team's work. He has also overseen long investigations linked to the Petrobras-Odebracht bribery affair in Brazil, and the 1MDB state investment fund scandal in Malaysia.

Reports in Swiss media last month of a previously undisclosed third meeting with the FIFA president revived pressure on Lauber.

On Friday, the prosecutor said any negative attention on his office "of course has an impact, everything does" for high-profile cases.

The disciplinary inquiry comes before Lauber meets a federal justice panel on Wednesday as part of the mandate renewal process.

The federal oversight office said it will appoint an outside counsel for the inquiry.

Lauber has led the ongoing FIFA investigation since the Zurich-based soccer body filed a criminal complaint in November 2014.

FIFA gave Lauber its ethics committee's investigation of the nine candidates bidding for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups, including winners Russia and Qatar.

FIFA's then-ethics prosecutor Michael Garcia resigned soon after. The former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York said he was unhappy with how his report was represented in a summary by FIFA's then chief ethics judge, Hans-Joachim Eckert, and with Blatter's leadership.

Eckert concluded all but one candidate likely broke bidding rules in their campaigns but that the voting results were not affected. [...]

Source: By GRAHAM DUNBAR Associated Press, 10 May 2019, Star Tribune

Football

https://www.startribune.com/swiss-attorney-general-investigated-over-handling-fifa-case/509746292/

 

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