A-League: Three footballers from the Australian top flight arrested for alleged betting corruption

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The police said they began an investigation in December 2023, assisted by the United Kingdom Gambling Commission.

A 33-year-old man has been charged with two counts of engaging in conduct that corrupts a betting outcome of an event, two counts of facilitating in conduct that corrupts a betting outcome of an event and participating in a criminal group.

He has been bailed to appear in court on 24 June.

A 27-year-old man and a 32-year-old man have been charged with engaging in conduct that corrupts a betting outcome of an event and participating in a criminal group. They have been bailed to appear in court on 27 June and 30 May respectively.

Police say a fourth player is expected to be charged when tracked down by police.

It is alleged the senior player paid the junior players up to 10,000 Australian dollars (£5,300) to intentionally receive yellow cards.

Police say failed attempts were also allegedly made to control the number of yellow cards during games on 20 April and 4 May 2024.

“In relation to one of the matches, there’s multiple hundreds of thousands of dollars been paid out,” NSW Police Detective Superintendent Peter Faux said.

“Whilst A$10,000 may seem like a lot of money to a young sports person, we will advise that is incredibly insignificant when you consider the damage to this young person’s reputation, damage to their club and their code’s reputation,” NSW Police state crime commander assistant commissioner Mike Fitzgerald said.

The A-League said: “The APL is aware of the arrests of three A-League players by NSW Police as a result of international law enforcement coordination focused on betting corruption related to alleged yellow card manipulation in games.

“The work to protect the integrity of our game must be unwavering and we are liaising closely with all relevant agencies on this matter.”

Football Australia chief executive James Johnson stated: “This is very troubling news for the Australian football community and beyond.

“The conduct that has been alleged has no place in our game. We will do everything we can to get to the bottom of it and no stone will be left unturned.

“The integrity of football in Australia is paramount, and we will not tolerate any actions that compromise it.

“We will work closely with the NSW Police and other law enforcement agencies to assist them in their investigation.”

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