PtG Article 19.03.2013

European Parliament to combat match-fixing and corruption in sport

The European Parliament has approved a resolution aimed at combatting the problems with match-fixing and corruption in sport.

On Thursday 14 March, the European Parliament adopted the resolution, urging everyone involved in the fight against match-fixing, such as sports organisations, national police, judicial authorities and gambling operators to better coordinate their efforts and share best practices in stamping out corruption in sport. 

Member states were encouraged to make match-fixing a criminal offence in their national legislation in order to be able to apply appropriate sanctions and ensure common penalties for match-fixing across Europe. The resolution furthermore called on the member states to enhance the cooperation of European law enforcement by creating joint investigation teams and stronger collaboration between prosecution authorities and by setting up special law enforcement units and regulatory bodies to identify and combat illegal activities in sport. 

Closer cooperation across borders and between stakeholders requires a further exchange of information. The resolution therefore suggested, among other, that gambling operators should be required by law to exchange information on irregular betting patterns and that information concerning people who have been named in connection with attempted match-fixing should be shared in to avoid them setting up illegal operations in another European country. 

Furthermore, member states and the European Commission should establish cooperation with third countries – especially countries identified as ‘Asian betting havens’ – in order to better combat the organised crime that is associated with match-fixing.

Finally, the resolution called upon sports organisations to develop a zero-tolerance policy on all types of corruption, urging them to establish a code of conduct for all staff and officials and to set up disciplinary bodies to deal with match-fixing. The governing bodies in sport were also called upon to not only commit to good governance practices but to apply to the highest standards of governance. 

These recommendations are set to support member states in their fight against corruption in sport.

See the full resolution and sets of recommendations here