We’ve seen a lot of Australians get slashed by police and tournament organizers for match-fixing and illegal betting in Counter-Strike, but the problem is apparently so serious that the FBI is now getting involved in cleaning up North America. North.
This story originally appeared on Kotaku Australia.
The revelation came from a new interview on YouTube with Ian smith, the commissioner of E-sport integrity commission (ESIC). ESIC is the organization that worked alongside Victoria Police to deal with match-fixing and throw it in Australian Counter-Strike, but as you can imagine, the problem goes far beyond that.
In a conversation with YouTuber slash32, Smith explained how an investigation was underway “among a relatively small but large group of players over a long period of time, organized match-fixing in North American MDL“.
“[It’s] what I would describe as classic match-fixing – players being bribed by outside betting unions in order to fix matches, rather than players opportunistically doing it on their own, and it lasts longer, that’s is much more organized. Again, to some extent we work with law enforcement and the FBI, which only recently had a sports betting investigative unit within the FBI. They’re good, but they’re inexperienced, because sports betting was never a big thing in America until recently, so everyone kind of gets their feet on that one, ”Smith said.
Smith also provided an update on the match-fixing investigations in Australia. While Australia’s approach to match-fixing had slowed things down – match-fixing is a criminal offense here – Smith said they would be in a position to announce charges in a matter of weeks.
“I am convinced that we will be able to make this public soon, in the next 10 days to 2 weeks”, the ESIC commissioner declared. “The betting scandal in Australia where, even though it was a large group of players – and there are definitely match-fixing there, and we are working with law enforcement there, it takes a lot longer once you start working with the police. Fortunately in Australia, these are criminal offenses. So coordinating everything with the police takes a lot more time. We have some very good, solid cases there, and if it were just us acting alone, we would announce these lawsuits now. But not all of the 42 guys were betting – it’s a much smaller group within this one that didn’t just bet, but manipulated the results.
The case Smith is referring to concerns the massive bans granted to Australian players earlier this year. Some players have received annual infractions for betting on their own matches. A small group of players within it, however, were banned for placing multiple bets against their own team in the matches they played, and in the interview Smith said ESIC had been able to to cross evidence of the in-game chat, Discord logs. and other corroborating elements to build their case.
Part of the reason North America is a little behind in this matter is that legal esports betting was not kosher in the United States until fairly recently. That hasn’t stopped fans and players from betting, but it doesn’t really get the attention of regulators in their respective territories until it becomes legal. The United States also actually has 50 different licensing jurisdictions and laws through how each state works, whereas countries like Australia simply operate on a national framework.
As for the Australian accusations, Smith had this to say:
“The first part we’ll get through pretty quickly, because we’re dealing with idiots, basically,” Smith said.
Not to be said, but honestly: stop betting on your own Counter-Strike matches. Stop that.
Article source https://kotaku.com/counter-strike-match-fixing-is-so-bad-the-fbi-is-gettin-1846596639