Match-fixing in Spain police arrest 17 suspected involvement

Police in Spain have arrested 17 people over an investigation into match-fixing at Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) matches.

Those arrested are managers and players of a third division team.

Police said the arrests were made as part of a collaborative operation with European law enforcement body Europol and Spanish football association LaLiga.

Around 11 people were arrested in the North African enclave of Melilla, while six people were detained in Granada, Andalusia, Spain.

The investigation was launched after Spain’s national gaming regulator, the DGOJ, informed police that it had received several match-fixing alerts about bets placed in Melilla on football matches involving a local team.

LaLiga said suspicions had also been raised through its whistleblowing process, noting suspicions of match-fixing at the Melilla side, as well as misuse of subsidies.

Police announced the start of an investigation in May.

Authorities say their investigations led them to uncover a criminal organization involving the president of the Melilla team, which they allege facilitated match-fixing and implicated the team’s players.

Players would have used third parties to avoid being linked to bets.

Seven specific matches are being investigated, but no further arrests are expected.

Police said they could not yet estimate how much money was defrauded by betting operators.

match fixing spain
Photo: FreePik

Match-fixing in Brazilian football

Indeed, match-fixing is not a problem unique to Spanish football.

The Maximum Penalty Operation, triggered by the Public Ministry of Goiás (MP-GO) from complaints of irregularities in the Brazilian Championships of Series A and B last year.

In addition, the operation also investigated alleged manipulations in state championship games this year.

Several athletes have been denounced and have already been punished sportingly with removal, fine and even banishment.