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May 24, 2022

Europol: 380 games across Europe suspicious of match-fixing

Rob Wainwright, director of Europol, revealed that a Champions League game staged in England in the last three or four years is part of a widespread investigation into match-fixing allegations, according to goal.com. As many as 380 games played across 15 different countries have been earmarked as suspicious following a lengthy investigation into what the European law enforcement agency considers a criminal network within the sport.A total of 425 players, officials and other individuals are also suspected of being involved in an organised crime syndicate based in Asia, which is thought to have been organising the operation to rig the results of matches.“This is a sad day for European football and more evidence of the corrupting influence in society of organised crime”, Wainwright said.Criminals are believed to have wagered Euro 16 million (GBP 13.9m) on fixed matches and recorded an Euro8m (GBP 7m) profit, with payments of Euro2m (GBP 1.7m) made to those involved in the scheme and the biggest single payment to an individual totalling Euro 140,000 (GBP 122,000).So far, 50 people have been arrested, with officials stating their concern that the news was simply “the tip of the iceberg.”Rob Wainwright revealed that a second Champions League match, not believed to have been played in England, is also under investigation.He told a press conference in the Netherlands: “This is the work of a suspected organised crime syndicate based in Asia and operated with criminal networks around Europe. It is clear to us this is the biggest-ever investigation into suspected match-fixing in Europe. It has yielded major results which we think have uncovered a big problem for the integrity of football in Europe”.

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