Betting operators, law enforcement agencies and governments have been urged to work together to prevent fixing affecting this summer’s Olympic Games. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) wants gambling stakeholders joining forces to fight betting corruption and match fixing in sport. A summit held in Lausanne saw the IOC come to an agreement with sports federation leaders and representatives from the EU, UN and Interpol that a compromise should be reached with all parties involved in betting.
“There was a consensus around the table that sporting fraud should be a criminal offense,” IOC director general Christophe De Kepper told The Associated Press. “A lot needs to be done on the government side and the cooperation between police and justice around the world. There is a sense of urgency.”
That urgency mentioned by De Kepper has to do with one thing only – preventing fixing at the London Olympic Games. With the complex systems to thwart it in place at most betting firms it shouldn’t be a problem but there will always be those that doubt this being enough. The Olympics being in London means that anyone found fixing will receive a hefty sentence and the IOC recognized Britain, along with France and Australia, as models that everyone should be looking at. British sports minister Hugh Robertson went as far as to cite one specific case.
“There was not a single person in the room who was not aware of the case,” Robertson told the AP. “If it can happen at a test match at Lord’s (cricket ground), it can happen at the Olympic Games.”
The IOC’s third annual summit will be in 2013 and they will look to work alongside other organizations, such as FIFA, to prevent anything untoward happening this summer.