Top 10 players caught cheating
HLTV.org's Editor in Chief Luís "MIRAA" Mira takes a look at some of the players who made headlines for not so good reasons.
For over a decade, several Counter-Strike players have worked hard to make a name for themselves in this game. When unable to make their mark, or sometimes simply for the fun of it, some resorted to cheating.
And while some of them have got away with it, some have not. From individual bans to team penalties, this list has it all. And even a player caugh cheating in a LAN qualifier for a major tournament. Curious to find out who we are talking about? Read the list compiled by us below.
10) Roman "smirnov" Smirnov - March 2006
The former iDemise player tried to get some extra help for the CAL-Invite match against Rival but it backfired, as he posted a bleak 23-23 score, his team still lost the match and he was banned for 12 months. His team, Turmoil, was marked inactive and demoted to CAL-Premier in the process.
9) Viktor "Sally" Filimonchenko - May 2007
The Russian legend was caught cheating during his time at Virtus.pro in one of the uyR tournaments the ESL used to organise every week. Filimonchenko, who currently plies his trade for EYESports, used a cheating program which blocked Aequitas, the ESL's anti-cheating tool. As a result, he was banned from all ESL competitions for a period of two years. Virtus.pro stated that someone had hacked Filimonchenko's Aequitas file, but the ESL kept the ban. He later entered the ESL's rehabilitation program for cheaters and saw his ban removed in May 2008 after he admitted to cheating.
8) Tobias "cuddy" Wägemann - May 2007
Suspicions about the n!faculty player cheating were brought to life after an EPS match against a-Losers, after which the league admins demanded his PoV demo. Afraid of what they would find, Wägemann stepped down as player and changed his status in the EPS page to inactive, removing all of his data from the website. As a result, the admins decided to check the HLTV demo, a solution that is rarely used, and came to the conclusion that Wägemann had cheated. n!faculty were barred from the league for two seasons, while Wägemann received a two-year ban and was never seen again in top-flight competition.
7) Munteanu "DecE" Liviu - November 2009
When the Romanian player decided to get "an extra pair of hands" for an ESL Balkan League encounter against Home Dominant, little did he know that repercussions would be enormous, and not just for him. neXtplease! were not only banned from the Balkan League, but also from Extreme Masters IV, while Liviu will not be able to play in ESL tournaments for a period of two years. Although the neXtplease! organisation decided to cut Liviu from the squad, the remaining players opted to stick with him, and they are now representing the colours of Earthquake.
6) Mike "CuZ" Nang - April 2004
The older of the Nang brothers always had a thing for controversy, so it was with little surprise that the community received the news of him cheating while at JaX Money Crew in a CAL-Premier play-off match against adverse reality, The former D!E talent, who was suspended from CAL for 13 months, would later find himself in trouble with GGL after failing to turn in a PoV demo.
5) Rodolphe "Diodel" Verloës - September 2009
The now Fair Frag player was caught red-handed in an ESL match which had nothing to do with the team he was representing at the time as the penalty in question occurred when he was playing for a mix team. Still, it earned him a two-year ban from all ESL competitions and iGamerz disqualification from both EPS France and the Extreme Masters.
4) Joona "natu" Leppänen - January 2005
One of the most famous Finnish players ever and a cheating program do not seem to match, but that was just the case with Leppänen. The former 4Kings ace was caught using a wall-hack program in ClanBase in early 2005, which earned him a temporary ban from its competitions. However, and after appealing against his ban ahead of EuroCup XII, Leppänen was handed a new one, this time permanent, because it was discovered that he had played several ClanBase matches using a fake nickname while his initial ban was still on.
3) James "wilzOOO" Wilson - May 2004
After holding an 'Element'less Schroet Kommando to a 12-12 draw, causing the Swedish-based side to leave Landed LAN 6 without playing overtime, the top of the world seemed to be a likely destination for c4u. But shortly after this, Wilson was found cheating in a Clanbase IE/UK Cup game against 4Kings, which resulted in him being permanently banned from all CB events. Later that year, c4u would be removed from EuroCup X after the admins found out that he had played for them again using a fake nickname.
2) Stephane "kristeN" dos Santos - October 2009
Even worse that being caught cheating is providing the admins with evidence to justify your own ban. The Portuguese-born Dos Santos, who has played in France his entire career, had some questionable actions in an EPS match between his team, WebOne, and cHuMbAwUmBa. After the match came to an end, his opponents decided to check the Aequitas file uploaded by Dos Santos himself, and discovered he had used a tool which consisted of red and blue boxes on the body skins of the Terrorists and Counter-Terrorists, respectively. In light of this, WebOne were removed from EPS France and also the Extreme Masters European qualifier, and Dos Santos was handed a two-year ban.
1) Pedro "aSpx" Leone - October 2009
It certainly took Leone a lot of nerve to use hacks at the Brazilian WCG qualifier, one of the most important tournaments in the country every year, but that is what happened. ECO.COBRA were one of the big surprises at the qualifier, placing 4th-5th, but Leone's playing style had rung alarm bells among his opponents. He sat at the end of the row, with his monitor facing the wall to prevent anyone from watching him, and he would reportedly get very nervous every time someone stood behind his team. After the tournament came to an end, he was handed a six-year ban after being found guilty of using a cheat which consisted of a small white dot that followed the enemies, which could be turned on and off with a simple mouse bind. In January 2010, Leone joined a new Lemondogs team for KODE5 Argentina, but nothing else has been heard from him ever since.