Spain match-fixing detainees to face judge

Huesca, Leagues, Spanish Primera División, Story
Spanish club Huesca are being investigated as part of a match fixing probe.

The six people detained this week in a match-fixing probe that has rocked Spanish football will go before a judge on Thursday.

The Spanish police conducted raids in five cities — Huesca, Malaga, Valladolid, Madrid and A Coruna — on Tuesday as part of an investigation into suspected match-fixing in the country’s top three divisions. The ongoing police operation named “Oikos,” follows an investigation by a court in Huesca.

A statement from Spain’s judicial body said: “On May 30, it is expected that the six people detained on Tuesday will declare before a judge and the public prosecutor.

“Aside from the people detained, the judge is investigating 15 others with connections to football, sports betting and club SD Huesca.”

Police searched six homes, two bookmakers and the headquarters of SD Huesca, with the judge “authorising the uploading of all the IT devices found.”

No names have been released by the court. The case involves possible charges of sports corruption, fraud and money laundering.

The operation stems from a claim filed by La Liga regarding suspected irregularities during last season’s league match between SD Huesca and Nastic Tarragona in the penultimate round of the Segunda Division in May 2018.

Huesca, already promoted to La Liga, lost 1-0 at home to Nastic, a team that was fighting to avoid the drop. Suspicion arose after large bets reportedly coming from Ukraine and Asia were made during the game.

Up to 30 betting companies suspended all betting quotes for that game after detecting large sums of money being placed on a 0-0 result at half-time and a Nastic victory at the end of the match.

Ana Munoz, vicepresident of the Spanish FA’s integrity department, said in a news conference: “It’s an unpleasant case. We are all together when it comes to fighting corruption, wherever it may be.

“We have the support of everyone that is fighting for the same cause. That is for Spanish sports — and in particular football — to be the best on and off the pitch. We are fully cooperating with Spanish police.

“We have to be cautious and allow the courts and the police to do their work. We have the best league in the world. The best players in the world play in Spain and the corrupted interest of many people are fixed on where the best are.”

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