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Match-fixing still a threat

Match fixing still a threat

Last week there were an unprecedented number of arrests related to football match-fixing which included a former Premier League player and two international football fixers and crime bosses from a Singapore syndicate. The arrests raised questions on just how ready and prepared Ireland and the UK are to face the threat of match-fixing which has in the last few years become an "epidemic".

There are several international law-enforcement agencies, including the UN, the Interpol and the EU Commission which have made a point of alerting sports organizations about the extend and danger of match-fixing in Europe by the hands of crime syndicates and illegal wagering rings based mostly out of South-East Asia.

According to the latest reports and investigations, the rise in match-fixing is directly related to the rise in global sports wagering facilitated by remote access and real time wagering within the last 10 years or so. There are on average about 400 million wagering odds movements every day with more and more taking place on online betting exchanges. The sports betting industry is now worth approximately $1 trillion (these figures include legal and illegal sports wagering) with football betting accounting for about 70% of the market.