ARD/WDR Documentary: New Betting Scandal in European Football?

COLOGNE, Germany, March 2, 2016 /PRNewswire/ --

According to the WDR's investigations, there have been irregular betting movements in connection with two football matches in Europe's top leagues. The suspicious bets were placed in betting shops in Southern Germany. This has been reported by Germany's ARD 1st TV channel in the documentary: "Betting Fraud in Football - Billion Dollar Business for the Mafia" by Benjamin Best, which will be broadcast on 2nd March 2016 at 21:45 hrs., following the TV film "Auf kurze Distanz". 
On 17.01.2015 two top matches were played on which irregular bets were placed. The games affected were in the Belgian 1st Division and the Dutch 1st Division. In the Belgian match between Ostend and Waasland-Beveren (3 - 3), suspicious bets were placed predicting that at least three goals would be scored in the match. In total, six goals were scored. In the match in the Dutch 1st Division, Nijmegen v. Willem II (1 - 0), suspicious bets were placed on a home win for Nijmegen. This prediction was also correct.
Irregular bets from Germany 
The irregular bets were placed in several betting shops in Southern Germany. In order to conceal the possible manipulation, so-called combination bets were made. Thereby the conspicuous matches were combined with other matches on a single betting slip. Overall, the bookmakers paid out a five-figure sum. Both matches have already been reported to the world football body FIFA.
Betting fraud continues to be a problem in football 
Despite the successful investigations of Bochum's SOKO "Flankengott" (Special Commission), betting bosses worldwide continue their lucrative business. The author of the documentary, Benjamin Best, succeeded in talking to one betting fraudster who played a leading role in the long-running Bochum process. He claims to earn between EUR 400,000 and EUR 600,000 a year through rigged football matches. "You only work with trusted third parties, and there nobody can prove anything. If you have a good referee and in three games he blows for suspicious penalties - nobody says anything." Currently the most lucrative country is Canada, claims the betting fraudster in the broadcast interview, in which his identity is kept anonymous.
Germany's Federal Supreme Court to hear appeal proceedings 
On 3rd March 2016, the Federal Supreme Court will open the appeal proceedings concerning betting fraud. The Bochum Public Prosecutors' Office had appealed against the acquittal of some of the accused. At the beginning of January, the SOKO "Flankengott" succeeded in arresting an alleged Dutch betting fraudster at Frankfurt Airport, who was strongly suspected in the proceedings.
WDR Press and Information, Telefon +49(0)221-220-7100 


West German Broadcasting Corporation WDR

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