Sport

US Open contestant among 28 professional tennis players in match-fixing scandal

US Open contestant among 28 professional tennis players in match-fixing scandal”

Their identity has not been revealed.

One player, whose identity was not revealed, competed in the 2018 US Open.

Europol said the players were among 83 people detained by Spain's civil guard, known as Guardia Civil, among them a tennis player who participated in the U.S. Open a year ago.

Authorities said the players tainted results after taking bribes from an Armenian ring that was dismantled in October.

Cash in excess of £150,000 and a shotgun were among the items retrieved in a series of raids, following which 15 people - including some of the players - were arrested.

Police accused Spanish player Marc Fornell-Mestres - whose highest career singles ranking was 236th in 2007 - of acting as the link between players and the Armenian ring that bribed them for betting purposes. No other names had been immediately disclosed by authorities.

Fornell-Mestres was provisionally suspended from the sport at the end of past year.

"A group of Armenian individuals used a professional player who served as the link between them and the other members of the network", the statement said, adding that 42 bank accounts were also frozen.

The investigation started in 2017 after the Tennis Integrity Unit (TIU) grew concerned about "irregular activities" relating to pre-arranged matches in the tournaments.

Professional tennis' anti-corruption body previous year complained about irregular activities at games, including prearranged matches, at the lower-tier ITF Futures and Challenger tournaments.

Spanish police are leading an investigation into match-fixing in tennis, with 83 people suspected of being involved in the ring. They also gave orders for "other members of the group" to place bets at the "national and worldwide level". In the Belgium case, police announced in June the arrest of 13 people in Belgium and said the gang also targeted lower-level tennis matches.



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