Sportradar has praised the effectiveness of its Fraud Detection System (FDS) after it was able to identify instances of match-fixing across Brazil, highlighting the importance of teamwork across the region.
The Paulista Football Federation sanctioned three clubs in November 2020 – Barretos EC, Olimpia FC and Paulista FC – for match-fixing activities (FPF).
The FPF, which worked closely with the Sao Paulo Civil Police, state prosecutors, and Sportradar Integrity Services, successfully brought the lawsuit.
Juan Mendez, business development manager for Sportradar Integrity Services, explained: “Sportradar is committed to supporting our partners at each step of the investigative process. Our FDS once again proved to be critical to detect the irregularities recorded in the betting markets, which allowed us to inform the Paulista Football Federation in real time, and also support the police investigation, which included providing expert testimony during preliminary auditions
“We are delighted to see that our FDS reports have once again been considered reliable evidence to help support proceedings in a major sporting court. The judgement represents another milestone for Sportradar Integrity Services, as we continue to support our global partners in the fight against match-fixing.”
Each of the three clubs earned a fine as well as a four-month suspension. The punishments for playing and coaching personnel were also released, with seven players and one coach from around the clubs also receiving fines and suspensions of up to one year.
In a statement, Margarete Barreto, Interim Magistrate for FPF, said: “In recent years, the FPF has adopted several prevention measures against match-fixing. This includes educating athletes and coaches about the threat of match-fixing to the integrity of the game, and applying bet monitoring to our matches, through our specialist partners at Sportradar Integrity Services.
“However, when match-fixing cases are verified, we need to take decisive action as we did here, and we welcome the Court of Sports Justice (TJD-SP) upholding the sanctions we imposed on the three clubs.
“We must avoid match-fixing affecting the fair play of our game at all costs, and we hope these decisive actions send a message to others that these activities will not be tolerated in our competitions. We congratulate the TJD-SP team and its president Dr. Olim, and our partners at Sportradar, for the collaboration which led to this result.”
Goalkeeper Pedro Ernesto Alves was handed a six-month ban from Barretos EC and fined $420 while a 24-match ban and $1,800 fine was issued to goalkeeper coach Maiken Dilso Kehrwald. Roberth Melonio da Silva, Edson Rocha, Deriky William Santos da Silva and Fabrício Pereira de Oliveira were all suspended for one year, each with a $940 fine.
A one-year suspension was given to Paulista FC defender Samuel Sampaio and fined $470. Meanwhile, a defender from Olimpia FC, Fernando Andrade, was issued a one-year suspension and fined $470.
Mariana Chamelette, trial lawyer and Sports Court Football Prosecutor, concluded: “These cases demonstrate the zero tolerance approach to match-fixing within Paulista football, which is becoming an increasing issue across Brazilian football. It shows that even more important than investigating and punishing those involved, is to prevent the match manipulations in the first place.
“Match-fixing prevention must be addressed at all clubs, as they have a moral obligation to educate and supervise their athletes. Sport is passionate, because it is unpredictable. Therefore, unpredictability is essential to the very existence of sport.
“Thus it is expected that managers, coaches, referees, athletes – in short, all those involved in sports practice – understand the seriousness of the issue faced, and place the preservation of sports integrity as a priority.”