News 8 June 2015

Four men face additional charges over match-fixing at South East Asia Games

Local media in Singapore are reporting that four suspects arrested in connection with alleged match-fixing of games at the South East Asian (SEA) Games football tournament are now facing additional charges in addition to the original match-fixing charge. The Singapore Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau (CPIB) late last month issued a statement that ‘a Singaporean alleged match-fixer and several co-conspirators of different nationalities’ had been arrested in connection with the SEA Games football tournament. Now local reports are saying that four of the men charged last week for ‘activities relating to match manipulation’ face extra charges on top of the original one.

Channel NewsAsia reported that Rajendran Kurusamy, last week reportedly charged with corruptly agreeing to give S$15,000 (€9,865) to Orlando Marques Henriques Mendes, the Technical Director of the Football Federation of Timor Leste, in exchange for a loss was, in a court hearing on Saturday, further charged with actually giving S$1,000 (€658) to Mendes as a bribe to ensure that Timor-Leste lost that match against Malaysia. It is understood that Mendes, who was ‘detained and charged by Singapore authorities in relation to match-fixing allegations’, allegedly for agreeing to accept the original S$15,000 from Kurusamy, has now been charged for actually accepting the additional S$1,000.

In addition, two others also already facing match-fixing charges, former Timor Leste football player Moises Natalino De Jesus and Indonesian Nasiruudin, have now reportedly also been charged with conspiring to offer money to at least seven Timor Leste players to lose the match against Malaysia.

Original Charges*
Kurusamy – activities relating to match manipulation (agreeing to give S$15,000 to Mendes)
Mendes – activities relating to match manipulation (agreeing to accept S$15,000 from Kurusamy)
De Jesus – activities relating to match manipulation
Nasiruudin – activities relating to match manipulation

New Charges
Kurusamy (i) giving S$1,000 to Mendes as a bribe; (ii) conspiring to offer money to > seven Timor Leste players
Mendes (i) accepting S$1,000 from Kurusany as a bribe; (ii) conspiring to offer money to > seven Timor Leste players
De Jesus – conspiring to offer money to > seven Timor Leste players
Nasiruudin – conspiring to offer money to > seven Timor Leste players

*as reported in local media.

Local newspapers are reporting that the Deputy Public Prosecutor Navin Naidu of the Corruption Directorate, a department of the CPIB’s Financial and Technology Crime Division, has asked for all four men charged to be detained with no bail due to the high risk of them absconding Singapore, despite Mendes claiming that he needed to find a lawyer to represent him. It is understood that Naidu said the Timor-Leste Embassy was aware of Mendes’ case and would make arrangements for legal representation.

Following the original arrests by CPIB, Việt Nam News reported that Lim Teck Yin, Chairman of the 28th SEA Games organising committee, said that Singapore would put in place a surveillance system that had ‘real intelligence’ and kept track of people participating in the SEA Games. Yin reportedly said that it was important for all countries to educate athletes that the very thing that they stood for could be destroyed immediately through fraudulent activities. He is reported to have said that Singapore would not hesitate to take action on cheating in sport, and would do so decisively without worrying about the further impact such cases would have.

The CPIB told the SII that they would ‘not be issuing any statement on the further charges faced by the four men accused of match-fixing allegations in relation to the SEA Games football tournament’.

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