Soccer Scandal: Almost 700 Games Fixed?

Courtesy of deadspin.com

The European Union Police (Europol)  have discovered that organized crime gangs around the world have either fixed or tried to fix hundreds of recent matches World Cup Qualifiers, European Championship Qualifiers, and two UEFA Champions League games. Europol says that an 18 -month review found 380 suspicious matches in Europe and 300 suspicious games outside the continent, mostly in Africa, Asia, and South and Central America. This may have been the biggest investigation into suspected match-fixing ever.

Europol said that 425 match officials, club officials, players, and criminals from at least 15 different countries were involved in fixing European soccer games dating back to 2008. 50 people have already been arrested.

Europol refused to name any suspected matches, players, officials or match-fixers, saying that would compromise ongoing investigations.

The investigation has uncovered 8 million Euros ($10.9 million) in betting profits and 2 million Euros ($2.7 million) in bribes to players and officials.

Europol director Rob Wainwright said that a Singapore-based crime syndicate was involved in the match fixing, spending up to 100,000 Euros ($136,500) per match to bribe players and officials.

“The ringleaders are of Asian origin, working together with European facilitators,” said Europol in a statement. He also added that “Russian speaking” and other criminal gangs were involved.

“This is a sad day for European football,” Wainwright said. He also said that criminals were cashing in on soccer corruption, “on a scale and in a way that threatens the very fabric of the game.”

When asked how he felt about the story and how he thought it might affect American sports senior Helio Ferreira said,”I don’t know how true it is. I don’t think it’ll affect American sports as much, but I do think that some American sports are fixed.”

If you’re a soccer fan or a fan of any sport how has this inspection impacted your view of ethics in the world of sports? Leave a comment below!

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About Brandon B.

I'm a proud Christian, above average sports fan and I'm currently in the process of growing up.

Posted on February 7, 2013, in Sports, Top Stories and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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