Author Archives: kylew

Sportsbooks Increasingly Reluctant to Pay Out Big Winners

When sportsbooks first started becoming legalized, one of the main advertising points was the reliable nature of the payouts. Compared to offshore sportsbooks or a local underground bookie who could withhold payment without consequence, sites like FanDuel and Caesars would be subject to state laws that forced them to pay out any and all winnings. For the overwhelming majority of sports bettors, this is exactly what happens; winning bets are graded quickly and withdrawals are processed and paid quickly too.

For some people however, this has not been the case. More frequently we are hearing stories of legal, online sportsbooks refusing to pay out big winners because of things like vague violations of terms and conditions and “obvious errors” that are never explained fully. In a recent report, The Washington Post highlighted how exactly this is done and some of the people it has impacted.

Sportsbooks Hiding Behind Terms and Conditions

When Tennessee resident Chris Kozak placed a series of improbable NHL wagers on Hard Rock Sportsbook, he had no idea how life-altering they would prove to be. By the time the dust settled, all three of these wagers were graded as wins and Mr. Kozak was due to be paid over $120,000. The joy that came with these winning wagers did not last long though, as Kozak saw that all of the wagers had been voided by Hard Rock.

Chris Kozak did what anyone would do and reached out to Hard Rock for an explanation. After multiple days, Hard Rock replied saying that the payouts he was due were “obvious errors” and that he was not due anything apart from a refund equal to his wagers. Mr. Kozak immediately refuted these claims, at which point Hard Rock attempted to “renegotiate” the payout. In other words, Hard Rock attempted to swindle Kozak into taking a payout less than the amount he was actually due. Kozak declined and when he inquired as to what the supposed “errors” were and what made them obvious, Hard Rock was never able to offer an explanation.

This song and dance went on for a while, but once Kozak reached out to news outlets who then began asking questions to Hard Rock directly, the company suddenly and inexplicably paid the Tennessee resident in full.

A Worrying and Increasing Trend

While Christopher Kozak’s story may seem like a unique situation borne from some sort of mistake, people who have looked into the matter say that this is likely not true at all. In fact, sportsbooks may be increasingly relying upon vague language in their site’s terms and conditions to void big wins.

Across all states where online sports betting is legal, there is agreement that a truly obvious error in the posting of the line should result in voided bets. For instance, if an NFL team is mistakenly listed as 130 point favorites rather than 13 point favorites, few people will argue that the sportsbook has to honor winning wagers on a spread as ridiculous as 130 points. What we are seeing more recently is sportsbooks voiding wagers in situations where the error is not obvious at all. In some states, sportsbooks are able to void wagers if it is later found out that the sportsbook in question was offering odds that varied dramatically from competitors. It does not end there either, as the power of determining whether a winning wager is actually a winner or not lies primarily in the hands of the sportsbooks. Cases like Chris Kozak are able to be solved because of the high-dollar value behind them, but in instances where people have $1,000 winning wagers voided, they are much less likely to experience a positive outcome.

Sportsbooks will deny that any practices like this are employed, but as more cases stack up it is becoming difficult to believe. There is no saying what type of regulation can put an end to this, but it is certainly going to be an issue that persists and possibly even grows as sports betting in the United States becomes more widespread.

Mississippi Plans to Move on Mobile Sports Betting in 2024

Despite being one of the first states to legalize sports betting at brick and mortar locations back in 2018, Mississippi has been slow to act in setting up mobile sports betting within the state. In contrast to states like Pennsylvania and Virginia, which quickly established a licensing process and began allowing sports betting operators to conduct business, Mississippi has hardly even taken a look at the topic. That much is expected to change thanks to a few notable recent happenings in an around the capital, Jackson.

Mobile Sports Betting Task Force

The wheels of mobile sports betting legalization in Mississippi started to spin back in May, when governor Tate Reeves called for the establishment of what he referred to as a ‘Mobile Sports Betting Task Force.’ This special group is to meet periodically to discuss how mobile sports betting should look, who should oversee it, and so on. The task force has since met a few times and is on the verge of presenting their findings to state lawmakers with the goal of making the decision to legalize mobile sports betting or not as clear-cut as possible.

The Mobile Sports Betting Task Force is comprised of 13 members that come from a wide variety of different background. From casino operators who are concerned what mobile sports betting might mean for in-person visits to their properties, to prospective online operators, the task force will cover all sides of the topic and weigh the pros and cons of mobile sports betting legalization.

Mississippi Gaming Commission Executive Director, Jay McDaniel, has helped the public understand what the task force is set out to do. In a statement, he said that the Task Force will “take all of the findings and conclusions, any recommendations that came out of that task force and then it will be up to the legislator on what to do with those findings in a bill.” What this really means is that even when lawmakers are presented with the task force’s findings, no bill is guaranteed to come as a result. With the topic of mobile sports betting legalization being more divisive in Mississippi than most other states, there is little expectation that online sports betting will go live in the deep South any time in 2024. With that said however, it is encouraging to see some movement in the direction of legalization.

Even though few are expecting Mississippi to legalize mobile sports betting with any real urgency, it would behoove the state to act sooner than later. Neighboring states like Arkansas and Tennessee have mobile sports betting already and are only expanding the number of operators they license. Each and every week, Mississippians drive across state borders for the sole purpose of placing wagers. In terms of tax dollars alone, there is a reason to think Mississippi should act sooner than later. On top of all of this, Mississippi is a state in dire need of additional tax revenue. If a mobile sports betting legalization bill is brought to the forefront this year, the tax revenue expected to be generated will be one of the major talking points in Jackson.

Barstool Founder Blasts NFL, Announces Retirement from Sports Betting

When people in the sports betting world talk about retiring, they are usually referring to a professional athlete who is calling it quits. This week, in the wake of another raucous NFL Sunday the retirement we are talking about is that of Dave Portnoy, who announced his retirement from sports betting. Portnoy was fuming after the Philadelphia Eagles came from behind, forced overtime via a last-second field goal, and ultimately won the game. This resulted in Portnoy losing a sizeable bet and taking to social media to blast the performance of the NFL’s officials.

This is not the first time Barstool’s founder has announced his exit from the sports betting world, having done so at least once before. The majority of people who concern themselves with Portnoy and his betting are doubting this retirement will last long, but it has been raising a lot of questions about celebrities and their endorsement of gambling.

Dave Portnoy: Degenerate Sports Bettor

When Philadelphia Eagles kicker Jake Elliot lined up for a game-tying 59-yard field goal in what can best be described as miserable conditions, few in the crowd were confident it was going in. Of course, the kick sailed through the uprights and after conceding a field goal midway through the overtime period, the Eagles drove down and sealed their victory with a touchdown. Dave Portnoy, who claimed to have a “monster” wager on the game, immediately sounded off on Twitter in a fit of rage, taking aim at both the Bills and the NFL refs.

He has not threatened legal action this time, but in previous spats Portnoy has done exactly that. Earlier this year, Portnoy threatened a lawsuit against the NFL after a betting loss of more than $100,000. In this incident, a wager was placed on the Cincinnati Bengals under the assumption their star quarterback, Joe Burrow would be playing. At the very last minute the star player was scratched due to injury, leading to a losing bet for Portnoy. No legal action has been brought to date, but one can imagine he and his team are at least tossing the idea around.

Portnoy, Barstool, and Online Sports Betting

Dave Portnoy is not just a big sports bettor and founder of a sports-oriented brand, he is himself integrally involved in the regulated sports betting industry. In 2020, Penn—an established gambling brand in the United States—bought a 36% stake in Barstool Sports, which by this point had a self-branded online gambling site in a few different states. Portnoy has once more regained control of the online sportsbook, but it has recently rebranded as ESPN Bet thanks to a high-dollar collaboration with the Disney-owned brand.

Thanks to this, and thanks to ESPN Bet already expected to begin service in more parts of the country, there are not many people betting that Portnoy will live up to his retirement announcement. With that said, it may be in the Barstool founder’s best interest to hang it up for good. Many of his recent high-profile and high-dollar bets have ended up losing, and though there is no way to say for sure the extent of Portnoy’s sports betting losses (or profits), we can say that it might be time for a break.

“Fraud is Fun”: Famous Last Words of Convicted Sports Betting Hacker

If you are ever going to pursue a life of crime, it would be wise to keep your wits about you and not brag about your criminal activities to anyone. For Wisconsin teenager and now convicted felon Joseph Garrison, keeping his wits about him was not in the cards. After stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from DraftKings sportsbook accounts, the 19-year old reportedly bragged to friends that “fraud is fun.”

This week, Garrison faced the music as he entered a guilty verdict in the fraud case and is now facing up to 5 years in Federal Prison. He is scheduled to be sentenced in January, but the story of his hacking efforts will live in the nightmares of his victims forever.

A Not-So-Sophisticated Fraud Worth Over $500,000

The most crucial takeaway from this story is that everyone should utilize different passwords for different online accounts. Garrison was able to succeed in his hack because well over half of people do not go through the effort of having unique passwords for their various online accounts. The method utilized in this hack is known as “credential stuffing.” Credential stuffing works by using stolen account information from an individual in order to access that same person’s accounts on other sites; in this case, DraftKings Sportsbook. As an example, if your username and password for your Netflix account was compromised at some point, it is likely that your username (often an email) and password are now in the hands of nefarious actors. Once these criminals have your name, email, and at least one password you have used in the past, they can then attempt to use that information to log in to other accounts, such as bank accounts and online betting profiles.

All said, sportsbook accounts on Draftkings had more than $600,000 stolen from them. As for how much of that Joseph Garrison and his co-conspirators are responsible for, that number is around $300,000 that law enforcement officials know about.

Last February, law enforcement descending upon Garrison’s residence and found loads of programs and files relating to credential stuffing. In addition, police were able to uncover messages sent between Garrison and co-conspirators explaining exactly how to hack compromised DraftKings accounts. That same co-conspirator, who has not been named, explained that Garrison claimed he was addicted to seeing money coming into his account, saying that fraud was fun.

DraftKings is Not Alone

Though the DraftKings Sportsbook hack might be the biggest of 2023, it is far from the only one we have heard about. FanDuel, another massive sportsbook operator in the United States, was also hacked this year, however only about 100 customers had their accounts compromised. A far cry from the thousands of victims at DraftKings.

In the physical gambling realm, both Caesars and MGM were targeted by online hackers earlier this year. The hack ended up costing over $100 million and saw the casino operators pay hackers more than $15 million in ransom money. With online sports betting and online gambling in general growing larger in the US every year, we can expect that hacking events like these will be on the rise. The question for players is whether or not their information can be protected and, if so, which sportsbooks offer the most protection for bettors.

NCAA President Expresses Concern Over Collegiate Betting

For any sports fan in the United States there has been a palpable shift in the way sports betting is viewed by both professional sports leagues and the NCAA. For decades, these organizations made it a top priority to stay at arm’s length, and sometimes much further, from any association with gambling, especially sports betting. Now that online and in-person sports betting is legal in more than 30 states, these leagues cannot miss out on the cash grab that sports betting partnerships bring.

In many ways, it is no surprise that professional leagues like the NHL and NFL were quick to adopt legal sports betting. After all, these are businesses whose main goal is to make money year in and year out. What surprised most people was how willing the NCAA was to play ball, but in the age of NIL (Name, Image, Likeness) it was only a matter of time. Now, the NCAA’s president is bringing to light what he labels one of his top concerns as it relates to the NCAA and sports betting; the prop bet. The fear here is that prop betting will negatively influence the game overall, with players either getting too wrapped up in how well bookmakers think they can perform or by pursuing match-fixing schemes that ruin the integrity of sports as a whole.

NCAA’s Charlie Baker Takes Issue with Prop Betting

Having took over the role of President of the NCAA earlier in 2023, former Massachusetts governor Charlier Baker has not been shy about his feelings regarding sports betting being as prominent as it is. Baker takes issue with betting on college sports in any capacity, but has recently voiced his concern over prop bets. Prop, or proposition, bets are a type of bet that allows bettors to wager on the performance of a specific individual. In college basketball, this may look like an over/under wager relating to how many points a college basketball player will, or will not, score.

In an interview with CBS, Baker talked at length about how sports betting has almost immediately altered the landscape of college athletics. Though Charlie Baker was still governor of Massachusetts and not with the NCAA five years ago, the NCAA did put up a fight against allowing sports betting through the door. Even as governor, Baker permitted sports betting to be legal but did not allow for betting on college sports in any capacity.

Worries About the Impact on Young Athletes

Charlie Baker and others are concerned about prop bets because of the “pressure created when college student see friends and classmates risking large amounts of money on their performance.” Baker might know a thing or two about this considering he played collegiate basketball at Harvard.

The reason for Baker keying in on prop bets is also because these types of bets are more susceptible to rigging. If a player knows his friend bet thousands on him to score under 25 points in a basketball game, it is not difficult to see how he might be able to help his friend out. This is just one of countless hypotheticals as it relates to prop bets and NCAA sports. Once you add in the fact that on any given night there are dozens of college basketball and football games going on, it is easy to see why players might think they can fix the outcome of prop bets without anyone being any wiser.

Charlie Baker’s aim is to ask states where NCAA prop betting is currently legal to pass legislation banning it. He has not divulged much in the way of how he plans on accomplishing this goal, but it is something he has been set on from his first day as NCAA President.

Seminole Tribe to Begin Offering Sports Betting in December

Beginning this December, casinos in Florida owned and operated by the Seminole Native American tribe will begin offering sports betting as well as a few new casino games. This decision being made by the Seminoles comes in the wake of a ruling by the US Supreme Court that allowed them to expand sports betting and gambling operations. This ruling came after more than 2 years of battling with pari-mutuel owners from across the Sunshine State.

The owners have since lost their lawsuit and exhausted all appeal options, which leaves the Seminoles in a great place to get ahead of the competition in Florida. As it stands, Seminole Hard Rock is the only brand legally allowed to operate casino gambling and sports betting in Florida and there is no reason to think other operators will be entering the market anytime soon.

In-Person Sports Betting Going Live

For now, the plans announced by the Seminole tribe include in-person wagering that will be taking place at any of the tribe’s six casinos in Florida. Online sports betting still exists in a state of limbo. The reintroduction of online sports betting is not going to happen in Florida anytime soon because a lawsuit was brought before the Florida Supreme Court earlier this year. The lawsuit, which is expected to be heard by the US Supreme Court, challenges the Seminole’s proposed offering of online sports betting.

Under the current plan, sports bets placed on mobile devices in Florida will all be run through servers located on Seminole land. By virtue of this, the tribe says, sports bets are actually being transmitted on sovereign tribal land. The lawsuit maintains that this is patently untrue and that the sports bet becomes a sports bet when and where it is placed, not where it is eventually computed.

At the Seminole’s top location, the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Tampa, new casino gambling including roulette and craps, is slated to go live on December 8th. The other five locations will see new casino gambling instituted on either December 7th or December 11th.

Who is Behind the Online Sports Betting Lawsuit?

The people fighting the existence of online sports betting in Florida are West Flagler Associates and Bonita-Fort Myers Corp., both gambling operators themselves. The lawsuit is expansive but mainly hits at the fact that any sort of online sports betting being offered the way the Seminoles envision is in violation of Amendment 3. This amendment requires that expansions of gambling operations must be approved by voters.

In theory, Seminole Hard Rock could get away with offering online sports betting now. In reality though, they are biding their time and being patient because in the midst of this lawsuit, relaunching an online sports betting application may not be the smartest move. All in all, Hard Rock and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis are convinced that they and their original gambling pact will prevail in the end. Though there is a lot that remains unclear at this point, what we can be sure of is that this is far from the last sports betting news we will be hearing from Florida this year.

NHL’s Shane Pinto Suspended for Sports Betting

Shane Pinto is an NHL player for the Ottawa Senators who, just this week, went from relatively unknown in the NHL to being featured in every major headline, albeit not for good reasons. The 22-year old Center was suspended by the National Hockey League for 41 games on Thursday, reportedly for “activities relating to sports wagering.”

There are still few details known about the particulars regarding what Pinto did, but we do know that the player is not going to appeal the decision. In a statement, Pinto said, “I want to apologize to the National Hockey League, the Ottawa Senators, my teammates, the fans and city of Ottawa and most importantly my family. I take full responsibility for my actions and look forward to getting back on the ice with my team.”

What Do We Know So Far?

As was mentioned above, there are almost no details known about what Pinto bet on, how much he was wagering, and perhaps most importantly whether or not he was wagering on games in which he took part. Pinto not appealing the 41-game suspension was less a product of him admitting guilt and more a part of the deal worked out between the player, the Player’s Association, and the league.

Despite the charges and suspension, Ottawa coach DJ Smith explained to reporters that the entire organization was eager to get Pinto back and to provide him with any support he might need in the interim. When Pinto’s suspension is concluded, he will be joining back up with the team right around the middle of the season. That is, if he is signed. Currently, Pinto is the last player in the NHL to be labeled and unrestricted free agent; something that did not make much sense to a lot of people until the news of his suspension broke on Thursday.

In addition to releasing Shane Pinto’s statement, the Ottawa Senators organization released a statement of their own. It read, “Shane is a valued member of our hockey club; an engaging, intelligent young man who made poor decisions that have resulted in a suspension by the National Hockey League. We know he is remorseful for his mistakes. The Ottawa Senators fully support the NHL’s rules on gambling. While saddened to learn of this issue, the entire organization remains committed to Shane and will work together to do what is necessary to help provide the support to allow him to address his issues and become a strong contributor to our community.”

Though Shane Pinto is not the first professional athlete in North America to be charged with gambling-related offenses since online sports betting was made legal by the Supreme Court, he is the first player in the NHL to be caught up in something like this. The NFL has already seen more than ten players suspended for gambling, and while Major League Baseball and the National Basketball Association have not made any such allegations, there are concerns that the time will soon come. How to combat these types of issues is something that is on the forefront of every major sporting league in North America, and handing down massive punishments like the one given to Pinto seems to be the number one weapon used by the leagues for the time being.

Illegal Betting Allegations Follow Top European Soccer Stars

In both the United States and across the world there are countless stories of professional athletes crossing the line when it comes to sports betting. Whether it be as serious as players fixing matches or as innocuous as players spending too much time at casinos, these stories persist. 2023 has been no exception and the latest story comes from the English Premier League, thanks to an Italian player by the name of Sandro Tonali.

Italian investigators allege that Tonali—as well as fellow countryman Nicolo Zaniolo who also plays in England—have participated in illegal betting on football (soccer) matches. The pair of players were questioned by police on October 12th. On October 17th, Tonali’s agent released a statement claiming that his client was battling a gambling “illness.” Both players have been away from their clubs and national teams and are, according to lawyers, fully cooperating with the investigation.

A Big Signing with Big Problems

Newcastle United has historically been one of the biggest teams in the English Premier League, a league regarded by many as the best in the world. Until recently however, Newcastle was only a shadow of its former self and was rarely vying for title contention and more often fighting to avoid relegation to the lower leagues. Thanks to an influx of money from new owners Newcastle has surged forward and, on the back of finishing in the top 4 of the English Premier League last season, spent hundreds of millions on new signings. One of those signings was an Italian named Sandro Tonali.

Barely two months into the season, Newcastle has already been forced to make announcements about their new star signing cooperating with authorities. While the allegations alone are enough to scare supporters, the potential fallout is even more terrifying because a potential ban from international and club football may be looming.

What are the Allegations?

The allegations facing both Tonali and Zaniolo have nothing to do with match-fixing or anything like that, but rather illegal online sports betting. In Italy, online sports betting is both permitted and regulated by government authorities, so it is entirely legal for people to place sports bets through licensed, regulated bookmakers. People run into issues when they begin using illegal sportsbooks to place bets, and that is exactly what authorities say Tonali and Zaniolo did.

These players would be facing potential punishments if all they did was use illegal sites to place wagers, but they are now facing even more punishment given that they are said to have bet on football matches. Most professional soccer players are not allowed to bet on sports but are especially not allowed to bet on soccer matches because of the glaring conflict of interest present. Another Italian, Nicolo Fagioli recently plead guilty to betting on soccer matches and was handed a 7 month ban from pro soccer. Fagioli told authorities that it was Tonali who introduced him to the betting site(s), and so the future outlook does not look like a bright one for the Newcastle signing.

The investigation is still ongoing and Italian authorities have not done much in the way of divulging the details everyone wants to hear, but the expectation is that Tonali will reach a plea deal within the coming weeks. There is relative certainty that he will face some sort of ban from professional soccer, but the thought is that by cooperating with the investigation he will receive a ban that allows him to get back on the pitch sometime in the near future.

New Type of In-Person Betting Experience Lands in Maryland

As far as sports betting in the northeast US is concerned, Maryland is a relative newcomer with only a few years of sports betting under its belt. In terms of online sports betting Maryland’s track record is even shorter. Despite being new to the industry, Maryland has quickly broadened the reach of sports betting in the state and has most recently opened up an in-person retail location that is unlike anything else in the DMV (DC, Maryland, Virginia) area.

A Star-Studded Opening Event Thanks to FanDuel

At the beginning of this past September, the town of Bethesda, Maryland was abuzz with hype and activity surrounding the opening of Sport & Social Bethesda, a sports bar that had just been given a sports betting license. Sport & Social Bethesda is owned by The Cordish Companies and chose to partner with FanDuel to bring in-person sports betting to the venue.

The venue was opened on the first day of the NFL season, September 7th amid much fanfare. In addition to executives from both The Cordish Companies and FanDuel, guests were able to mingle with former Washington Redskins players like Brian Mitchell, Santana Moss, and Dexter Manley. In fact, Brian Mitchell played the role of MC for the evening, awarding giveaway prizes to guests and generally keeping the party atmosphere alive.

A New Betting Destination for Marylanders

Sports & Social Bethesda is an interesting type of facility that really does not exist in most of the rest of Maryland nor other neighboring states. Rather than being a sportsbook within a casino like you might find at nearby MGM National Harbor in Oxon Hill, Maryland, Sports & Social Bethesda seems more like a “night out” destination that also happens to be equipped with in-person sports betting kiosks. In addition, one of the establishment’s walls is entirely covered by screens of various sizes showing every major (and some more obscure) sporting event. For the person who may not want to deal with the casino crowds, but also wants a place to make bets and watch the games Sports & Social Bethesda is perfect.

In total, the space is over 8,000 square feet and will play host to concerts and other events in addition to serving as a sports bar. The main viewing screen is bigger than anything you will find at another sports bar and is innovative in that it can show one single game, or a plethora of different events simultaneously.

Something that does not get talked about enough is just how rapidly Maryland has expanded its sports betting footprint. In-person sports betting came first in December of 2021, but it was not until almost a year later until mobile sports betting sites began going live. Nearby Pennsylvania has had mobile and in-person sports betting for significantly longer and are soon going to boast fewer sports betting operators than Maryland. While this does not necessarily mean one state is superior to the other for bettors, it shows you plainly that Maryland is not wasting any time.

Illegal Sports Betting Ring Busted by Spanish Police

As online sports betting and modern day sports become increasingly intertwined, criminals have been looking for ways to take advantage. Match-fixing and other sports betting-related crimes are nothing new, but the way in which some of them operate certainly is. In the past, those looking to fix matches or otherwise gain an unfair advantage over bookmakers would have to go to extreme lengths to do so, and sometimes at great cost. This meant either knowing players and coaches personally or by being part of—or familiar with—organized crime syndicates.

For bettors in today’s world, an internet connection could be all it takes to take advantage of bookmakers. This week, Spanish police in conjunction with multiple other international law enforcement agencies announced that they had busted a criminal sports betting ring that has been operating since at least 2020. The group in question is accused of both fixing sporting events and finding loopholes in online betting technology that would allow for them to place wagers before bookmakers could update live odds.

Yearslong Investigation Leads to Unbelievable Findings

It was back in 2020 when Spanish police first noticed suspicious betting activity taking place. As odd as it may seem, the suspicious betting activity in question was wagers that were being placed on table tennis matches. When Spanish police looked into the matter further, it was uncovered that the crime ring was betting on more than table tennis alone. In fact, the group did not discriminate at all and were known to place bets on anything from handball, to soccer, and anything in between.

The crime group was able to make significant sums of money betting on sports because they were doing it in a way that allowed them to place bets before live odds could be changed. The group was able to access stadium and arena live camera feeds while matches and events were going on. Because these feeds were actually live and not subject to TV delays we unknowingly experience all the time, the criminals were able to place bets up to a minute before an online sportsbook had the opportunity to change odds.

Imagine being able to bet on the next goal scorer in a soccer match with 100% accuracy. In a nutshell, that is exactly what these people were doing; and doing it on a large scale.

A Look Inside the Operation

Despite the criminal organization being based and arrested in Spain, none of them are Spanish. The group consists primarily of Bulgarians and Romanians. The people at the top of the group’s food chain had connections to a slew of Bulgarian and Romanian athletes who would assist in match-fixing. Because of these connections, the crime syndicate was able to place wagers on a massive scale with relative certainty that they would be paid out handsomely. And paid out they were.

Authorities first began putting people behind bars for being part of this crime ring over a year ago, but it was not until this past summer that the full scale of the crime was unveiled by police. Even now, a lot remains unknown about who participated. Of special interest to authorities and the public is the athletes who accepted bribes from this group in order to fix matches or otherwise give them an unfair edge over the rest of the betting public.

Authorities have seized many devices through their investigation and are still combing their way through it all. Fake bank cards, computers, cell phones, and so much more all have helped police paint, and continue to paint, a picture of how this group operated. In all likelihood, they are not the only group of their kind out there.