Spanish police arrest tennis players in match-fixing ring

Jose Verdugo
Enero 10, 2019

Some €167,000 (£151,000) in cash was seized along with a shotgun, more than 50 electronic devices, five luxury cars, credit cards and documents relating to the case in police raids on 11 properties.

Spanish police have broken up a tennis match-fixing ring that is alleged to involve almost 30 professional players, including one who played in the last US Open.

Forty-two bank accounts and their balances have been frozen.

"Our officers have proved the group had been operating since February 2017 and estimate that they had earned millions of euros through the operation", Spain's Civil Guard said in a statement.

Authorities said on Thursday the players tainted results after taking bribes from an Armenian ring that was dismantled in October.

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Spanish police are leading an investigation into match-fixing in tennis, with 83 people suspected of being involved in the ring. "Of those 83, 28 are professional tennis players who have either been detained or investigated - one of whom took part in the last US Open".

According to BBC, the Civil Guard added that "once they got the bribe, the Armenian members went to the places where the matches were being played to make sure the player went through with what they had agreed, making the most of their imposing size".

Police said the organised group bribed the players to guarantee predetermined results and used the identities of thousands of citizens to place worldwide bets on the matches.

European Union law enforcement agency Europol, which supported the operation led by Spanish authorities, said at least 97 matches from lower-tier Futures and Challenger tournaments were fixed.

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