The Sports Betting Integrity Forum (a body made up of representatives from the Gambling Commission, sports national governing bodies (“NGBs”), player associations, betting operators, law enforcement agencies and the Government) has released a Sports and Sports Betting Integrity Action Plan (“Plan”).
The Plan represents the outcome of one of the three specific actions identified in the UK’s Anti-Corruption Plan (previously reported on here) – to create a plan to: (i) prevent sporting events and licensed sporting betting markets from being corrupted; and (ii) deter people from organising corrupt sports events to manipulate betting markets.
The Plan prioritises the development of public and private sector intelligence capabilities and enhancing the effectiveness of operation responses by, amongst other things:
- increasing channels of communication and information sharing between the constituent members of the Sports Betting Integrity Forum, as well as promoting measures to educate sporting participants and customers of betting websites to develop an understanding of the threats presented by corrupt practices such as match-fixing;
- preventing and disrupting corrupt activities by prosecuting offenders. To the extent that they have not already, NGBs and player associations will ensure that their codes of conduct, betting rules and contractual provisions establish clear frameworks to enable sanctions to be applied; and
- in acknowledgement of the fact that match-fixing may involve organised crime at local, national and international levels, requesting that the Government align sports, sports betting and criminal justice policies focused on tacking corruption in sports to ensure criminal prosecutions are pursued where appropriate.
The Sports Betting and Integrity Forum will report on progress of the Plan (which is available in full here) via a public facing website (yet to be launched) to ensure transparency and visibility.