January 31, 2013

CONCACAF to target match-fixing

CONCACAF has announced that it is exploring a number of measures designed to combat match-fixing and corruption in football.
The governing body for football in the Americas and the Caribbean has released a statement saying it's in the process of identifying measures on a case-by-case basis following a workshop which ended in New York Friday.

CONCACAF says it's also examining a number of preventive steps in the form of courses and training programmes as well as specific legislation.

"Match manipulation in football must be tackled in the strongest possible way and we are glad that CONCACAF is taking a proactive approach on this subject," said Serge Dumortier, senior security manager at FIFA.

"We must take all the steps necessary to safeguard the integrity of our sport."

More than 30 delegates from football, government and law enforcement in Canada and the United States attended the workshop co-hosted by CONCACAF and organised by INTERPOL and FIFA.

The two-day Integrity in Sport workshop examined a range of topics, including the betting industry, match-fixing threats, governance, education, and prevention.

"This workshop has the goal to raise awareness of the key contemporary match-fixing issues and threats in football, and to identify good practice and areas for development," said Shawn Bray, head of the US National Central Bureau in Washington.

"The goal is to bring together players, referees, coaches, sports associations, betting regulators and law enforcement to improve individuals' awareness and understanding of corruption in football."

Officials say match-fixing has become a global matter affecting every sport on the planet and that football is now a high target for unlawful business deals.

Presentations were made by INTERPOL, FIFA and Early Warning System, a company established to monitor matches and to safeguard the integrity of football.

"The football family must certainly be an intrinsic part of the battle against match-fixing through education, surveillance and sanction," said CONCACAF General Secretary Enrique Sanz.

"However, we mustn't forget to work in partnership with all other affected sports, governments, media, fans, and society as a whole."

A similar workshop for the confederation's Caribbean members will take place in Panama at their Congress in April.

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