FIFA Bans 7 Referees over Bulgaria's Friendly Betting Scam

Sports | August 10, 2011, Wednesday // 17:55|  views

Bolivia`s Jhasmany Campos (front) vies for the ball with Latvia`s Maksims Rafalaskis (L) during their international friendly soccer match in Antalya, Turkey, 09 February 2011. Latvia won 2-1. Photo by EPA/BGNES

FIFA has banned for life four Hungarian and three Bosnian referees over their involvement in match-fixing at an international friendly tournament, where Bulgaria played too.

The soccer body's disciplinary panel came up with its decision following a hearing at its headquarters in Zurich over allegations of a betting scam that led to all seven goals scored on penalty kicks.

Police have arrested people in Asia, Europe and Africa for rigging matches.

At the beginning of March FIFA opened disciplinary proceedings against match officials in relation to the international A friendly matches Bolivia v Latvia and Estonia v Bulgaria played in Antalya (Turkey) on 9 February 2011.

The Bulgaria-Estonia game ended 2-2 with all four goals coming from the penalty spot. Latvia beat Bolivia 2-1 and all three goals were also scored from penalties.

Both games was organized by the Thailand-based agency "Footy Sport International", while Russian Sergey Protsenko acted as an intermediary despite not holding a license by a FIFA manager.

The Bulgarian body has repeatedly protested its innocence, saying they knew nothing of the betting scam.

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Tags: football, Switzerland, Matthaeus, Bolivia, Latvia, FIFA, UEFA, Bulgaria, Estonia, penalties, draw, Lothar Matthaeus, Antalya, turkey, Turkish, estonian, Bulgarian, friendly, Montenegro, England, Wales, Group G, penalty, spot, kicks


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