Hawks set to swoop on ‘match-fixing’ officials

2012-12-20 08:42

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The Hawks are poised to arrest several prominent soccer officials in connection with the alleged R8-million match-fixing scam involving Bafana Bafana games.

The arrests will “shake South African football to its core”, according to Hawks spokesman Paul Ramaloko, the Sowetan reported today.

A special Hawks team and international law enforcement agencies are sifting through documents recently seized in raids on several Safa officials’ offices and homes, and the offices of foreign football associations.

Ramaloko said the Hawks had been investigating the case since early this year, but a complaint of corruption was laid only this week and a criminal investigation was officially opened only on Wednesday.

This follows the suspension of the president of South Africa’s football association (SAFA) and four other leading officials in the wake of a FIFA report into a match-fixing scandal.

Kirsten Nematandani and a quartet of SAFA administrators, including new chief executive officer Dennis Mumble, have been relieved of duty for their role in the fixing of four friendlies South Africa played ahead of the 2010 Soccer World Cup.

A Fifa investigation into the activity of convicted Singaporean match-fixer Wilson Perumal and his Football 4U organisation highlighted the involvement of the five South African officials, a press briefing was told.

The results of matches against Thailand, Bulgaria, Colombia and Guatemala in the weeks leading up the 2010 World Cup were found to have been pre-arranged to benefit an Asian betting syndicate.

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