Six people arrested over alleged match fixing
Australian police have made six arrests following an investigation into match-fixing in a Counter-Strike tournament, it has been announced.
The operation involved raids in Mill Park, South Morang and Mount Eliza, all in the state of Victoria, and also in Perth, West Australia, where no arrests were made.
The six men, aged between 19 and 22, were detained on suspicion of "engaging in conduct that corrupts or would corrupt a betting outcome of event or event contingency, or use of corrupt conduct information for betting purposes", according to a statement from the Victoria Police. They were interviewed and released pending further inquiries, with the investigation still ongoing.
If proven guilty, the six men, whose identities were not revealed, could face up to 10 years in jail.
The investigation was launched in March of 2019 following a complaint from a betting agency regarding suspicious betting activity in a CS:GO tournament. It is believed that at least five matches were impacted and over 20 bets were placed by Australian punters.
“Esports is really an emerging sporting industry and with that will come the demand for betting availability on the outcomes of tournaments and matches," said Victoria Police Assistant Commissioner Neil Paterson.
"It’s important that police and other agencies within the law enforcement, gaming and betting industries continue to work together to target any suspicious activity.
“These warrants also highlight that police will take any reports of suspicious or criminal activity within esports seriously, and we encourage anyone with information to come forward."