International Cricket Council (ICC) seeks Interpol help to prevent match fixing, corruption

Times of India on December 16, 2011 released the following:

“NEW DELHI: The International Cricket Council has sought the help of the Interpol in strengthening its anti-corruption mechanism and prevent organised crime from entering into the game through spot-fixing and illegal betting.

Interpol chief Ronald K Noble, who is on a three-day visit to the country and had met ICC president Sharad Pawar and BCCI officials, on Friday said they were looking forward to a “tie-up” with the ICC and BCCI to help them in strengthening their anti-corruption mechanism.

“Young players are easy targets for unscrupulous organised criminals and illegal gamblers. We know that with online betting on the Internet that match-fixing takes place even though the results don’t change… There are lot ways in which people can make lot of money without altering the results of the match,” Noble told a press conference.

In September, ICC’s anti-corruption wing chairman Ronnie Flanagan had said that talks are on with the Interpol.

“They (ICC) are looking at preventing organised crime from entering into cricket that is where Interpol can play a role. And secondly on January 21, 2012 there is an ICC meeting in Dubai where Interpol will be participating and there they will be discussing this matter further,” CBI director AP Singh said on the proposed tie-up of Interpol with the cricketing bodies.

Interpol is coming up with a dedicated centre in Singapore for promoting integrity in sports with the help of FIFA for a 10-year period in an effort to help tackle the global betting and organised criminals.

Sources said the Interpol is also exploring a similar arrangement with the cricketing body.

Noble said illegal betting has turned trans-national and with the advent of Internet and live coverage it is watched in countries across the globe.

He said the Interpol with its global presence can share information about illegal gambling with the ICC and clarified that Interpol would not be probing any corruption cases in cricket.

According to Noble, the focus of the tie-up would be to teach “young” players, agents and officials ways in which they can be “tricked” into doing something illegal which might look innocent at the first instance.

“We would like to have a prevention programme put in place whereby young players, officials, agents are told about ways in which the corruption occurs. The ICC have a great unit in the area of fighting corruption. We believe we can learn from that unit,” he said.

In September, former ICC Anti-Corruption Unit chief Paul Condon has also raised the issue of corruption in cricket and blamed the “frenzied commercialisation of Twenty 20″ tournaments for this.”


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