15 European countries sign anti match-fixing treaty; AIFF to ban cellphones in dressing rooms

Weekly Media Recap 15-21 September 2014 Published 23 September 2014

Football about to be kicked

The media this week has focused on two main cases of good practice. On the one hand, the signing by 15 European countries of a Council of Europe treaty which agrees to improve international cooperation between law enforcement agencies, sports governing bodies, and betting operators. On the other hand, the new draft regulations by the All India Football Federation to ban the entry of club owners and the use of cellphones from dressing rooms.

Additionally, this week’s media recap includes four current investigations in four different countries; Denmark, Singapore, Spain and the United Kingdom. In the Spanish investigation, football players reported and are now testifying against a fellow player for alleged match-fixing. This is a strong portrayal of footballers’ commitment to sports’ integrity, and reinforces INTERPOL’s key phrase for players, coaches and referees: Recognize, Resist and Report.

 

CURRENT INVESTIGATION

Denmark

Danish police have charged a 27-year-old man with serious fraud for fixing two matches in Denmark's second-tier football league four years ago. Prosecutor Per Justesen said Thursday that the man, who was not identified, was one of six suspects in a match-fixing scheme involving an unnamed Filipino organization. Four of the suspects are players with Danish club Hvidovre. Authorities had earlier said the 27-year-old man gave the Filipino organization information about one of the two games, which was used to bet on the game. The five others remain preliminarily charged — a step short of formal charges — in the case. Justesen would not say whether they would be formally charged.

Source: "Danish police charge man in match-fixing case", 18 September 2014, Associated Press, https://www.sacbee.com/2014/09/18/6717002/danish-police-charge-man-in-match.html

Singapore

Dan Tan Seet Eng, named by prosecutors as the chief of an international match-fixing gang, challenged his detention without trial in Singapore. Tan is seeking a court order against the Home Affairs Minister and a superintendent of the maximum security Changi Prison Complex for a review of his detention, according to papers filed last month with the Singapore High Court. Singapore remanded Tan and three others over alleged match-fixing offenses in October 2013, using powers that allow some suspects to be detained without trial. It’s the first time the law, introduced 59 years ago to deal with threats posed by communism and secret societies, has been used for suspected match-riggers. Tan has been identified by Italian authorities and Singapore prosecutors as the head of a match-fixing syndicate. The group was responsible for fixing or attempting to rig 680 games from 2008 to 2011, European police body Europol said last year. Those convicted in the city for match-fixing face a jail term of as long as five years and a fine of as much as S$100,000 ($79,000) for each charge. Singapore’s anti-corruption agency investigated over 10 soccer-related graft cases in the last decade with at least six found guilty.

Source: Andrea Tan, "Soccer-fixing boss suspect challenges Singapore detention", 15 September 2014, Bloomberghttps://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-09-15/soccer-fixing-boss-suspect-challenges-singapore-detention.html

Spain

Jose Vega, former Xerez mid-fielder, is under criminal investigation for match-fixing allegations in relation to a key promotion match, Girona vs Xerez, in May 2013. Although his team surprisingly won 4-2, according to the investigation, he held conversations previous to the match about whether his team would lose on purpose. Vega has not made formal declarations, but other players have already testified. Allegedly, Vega had mentioned to another player that he had been offered 75,000 euros by Girona to let them win. Match-fixing entered the criminal code in Spain in December 2010, and is punishable with up to four years in prison.

Source: Rafael Méndez, "Primer jugador imputado por amaño", 21 September 2014, El Pais, https://deportes.elpais.com/deportes/2014/09/20/actualidad/1411235487_436730.html

United Kingdom

Delroy Facey, a former Premier League footballer has appeared in court after being charged over an alleged match-fixing conspiracy. He was charged with conspiracy to commit bribery earlier this month following a National Crime Agency (NCA) inquiry. Facey was at Birmingham Crown Court for Friday's brief hearing, and is set to re-appear at the crown court for a plea hearing on October 27. Appearing alongside Facey was Moses Swaibu, 25, formerly of non league Brighton-based Whitehawk FC who is accused of one count of the same charge. Swaibu is facing re-trial after a jury failed to reach a verdict in June. Both men are set to be tried over the allegations in April, next year. Facey was one of six men arrested last November after The Telegraph investigated the activities of a Singaporean fixer called Chann Sankaran.

Source: "Former footballer Delroy Facey appears in court over match fixing", 19 September 2014, News Agencieshttps://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/news/11109320/Former-footballer-Delroy-Facey-appears-in-court-over-match-fixing.html

 

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