Thursday, July 19, 2018

Greece probes football pros in tax crackdown

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 23 Sep 2010


Greece is probing the accounts of at least two football managers and other professionals to confirm suspicions of tax evasion and match-fixing, an official said on Thursday.

“We are conducting an investigation into Greek football and we are opening suspect accounts,” the head of the state financial crimes squad Yiannis Kapeleris told AFP.

“Our goal is to determine whether this money comes from illegal activity such as illegal betting or football rule violations,” he said.

“We have suspicious findings on two managers and other sector professionals in addition to companies based in Cyprus, Britain and elsewhere who could be implicated in undeclared transfer commissions or bet takings,” Kapeleris said.

The Greek government has launched a crusade against endemic tax evasion in a bid to fill empty state coffers as the country battles an unprecedented financial crisis that saw it narrowly avoid bankruptcy in April.

A cleanup of Greek football, where talk of foul play is rife, has been debated endlessly in the country for years.

In December, Greece’s general sports secretary Panos Bitsaxis said a report from European football governing body UEFA concerning suspect results would be forwarded to judicial authorities for further investigation.

He said the UEFA report mentioned possible match-fixing in 13 matches of the second division and two Greek Cup matches, involving 12 clubs, but refused to identify the clubs before charges are formally pressed.

No news has since emerged on this investigation.

Last week, a second division club chairman was briefly detained over a match-fixing charge levelled by a rival team’s goalie. He was later released.

A UEFA disciplinary committee has yet to decide on a 2004 UEFA Cup match between Greek club Panionios Athens and Dinamo Tbilisi which finished 5-2 and was under investigation for being fixed and which drew unusually high betting stakes.


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