The International Tennis Integrity Agency (ITIA) confirmed that seven Belgian tennis players have been suspended from the sport after admitting to breaches of the Tennis Anti-Corruption Program (TACP).
The sanctions are linked to a recently concluded criminal case involving a match-fixing syndicate in Belgium. Collaboration between the ITIA and Belgian authorities led to a five-year custodial sentence for the leader of the syndicate, Grigor Sargsyan.
All seven players – Arnaud Graisse, Arthur de Greef, Julien Dubail, Romain Barbosa, Maxime Authom, Omar Salman and Alec Witmeur – were convicted by the criminal court and have subsequently agreed sanctions with the ITIA.
Three players – Witmeur, de Greef and Barbosa – have been provisionally suspended by an AHO since May 2021 when they were formally charged in the criminal process in Belgium, as they were active players at that time. Time served under provisional suspension will be credited against these players’ periods of ineligibility. Witmeur admitted to six breaches of the TACP, while de Greef and Barbosa both admitted to nine breaches.
As such, their sanctions are as follows:
- Arthur de Greef, who reached a career-high ATP singles ranking of 113 in 2017, has been suspended for three years and nine months, and fined $45,000 with $31,500 suspended. De Greef’s suspension ends on 26 February 2025.
- Romain Barbosa, who reached a career-high ATP singles ranking of 403 in 2016, has been suspended for three years and nine months, and fined $45,000 – with $31,500 suspended. Barbosa’s suspension ends on 26 February 2025.
- Alec Witmeur, who reached a career-high ATP singles ranking of 1056 in 2011, has been suspended for two years and seven months, and fined $30,000 – with $21,000 suspended. Witmeur’s suspension ends on 26 December 2023.
For the remaining four players – Graisse (12 breaches), Dubail (nine breaches), Salman (six breaches) and Authom (six breaches) – the sanctions take effect from the date of their agreed sanction.
Their sanctions are as follows:
- Arnaud Graisse, unranked, has been suspended for four years and 10 months, and fined $60,000 – with $42,000 suspended. Graisse’s suspension began on 2 October 2023, and will end on 1 August 2028.
- Julien Dubail, who reached a career-high ATP singles ranking of 371 in 2012, has been suspended for three years and nine months, and fined $45,000 – with $31,500 suspended. Dubail’s suspension began on 4 October 2023, and will end on 3 July 2027.
- Maxime Authom, who reached a career-high ATP singles ranking of 143 in 2013, has been suspended for three years and nine months, and fined $30,000 – with $21,000 suspended. Authom’s suspension began on 28 October 2023 and will end on 27 July 2027.
- Omar Salman, who reached a career-high ATP singles ranking of 464 in 2018, has been suspended for two years and seven months, and fined $30,000 – with $21,000 suspended. Salman’s suspension began on 9 October 2023, and will end on 8 May 2026.
These sanctions conclude ITIA proceedings against Belgian players in relation to the Sargsyan match-fixing ring, though syndicate cases relating to players from outside Belgium remain ongoing.
During the players’ suspensions, they are prohibited from playing in, coaching at, or attending any tennis event authorised or sanctioned by the members of the ITIA: ATP, ITF, WTA, Australian Open, Roland Garros, Wimbledon and US Open, or any national association.
Salsa Technology Launches Salsa Safe, a Dedicated Platform for iGaming Regulators
Salsa Technology has added another product in its portfolio of solutions for the iGaming sector. This latest addition is a secure system designed to meet the demand of global regulators in the online gambling sector.
Salsa Safe provides regulatory bodies in the sector including Brazilian state lotteries with a comprehensive system. It integrates operator management data and enables effective and transparent monitoring of operations.
In addition to being an important ally of regulators, Salsa Safe provides operators with the tools they need to comply with all regulatory requirements, helping to prevent fraud, protect players and promote responsible gaming.
The platform was specially designed to enhance responsible gaming by monitoring suspicious bets, types of self-exclusions and data control. Salsa Safe automates management reports for financial teams including transaction volume per operator, tax calculation and application of compliance models. It is worth highlighting that the product is fully integrated with PIX, which is the most popular method of the Brazilian payment system.
Salsa Safe offers a unique approach to data management, combining data from multiple sources to provide regulators with a complete view of operations. The platform’s intuitive design and advanced reporting capabilities make it easy to monitor operations, detect fraudulent activity and comply with regulations.
“We are excited to introduce Salsa Safe,” the Chief Operating Officer for Salsa Technology, Andre Filipe Neves, said. “This comprehensive solution not only provides regulators with necessary tools for monitoring operator activities but also assists operators in meeting the stringent requirements imposed by regulators.”
Spillemyndigheden Issues DKK100,000 in Fines for Illegal Games Advertising
Denmark’s gambling regulator, Spillemyndigheden, has issued fines totalling DKK100,000 for an individual found to be advertising illegal games across two websites.
The games in question were being offered by operators without a licence in Denmark. Neither the identity of the websites nor the individual were disclosed by Spillemyndigheden.
The regulator said the two websites linked to sites where users could gamble, even if they were registered with ROFUS, the national self-exclusion programme in Denmark. Only sites that do not hold a licence allow users registered with ROFUS to gamble.
Spillemyndigheden added that it is an offence to promote websites and operators without a licence. The regulator reported the individual to the police, which in turn ruled they had broken the law.
This led to the issuing of two fines of DKK50,000 – one for each website. This left the total fine at DKK100,000. The total was recommended by Spillemyndigheden.
The case marks the first occasion where fines have been issued for promoting how players can gamble even after registering with ROFUS.
MGA Issues New Guidelines for Processes Related to Gaming Devices
The Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) has released a notification for all licensees that hold a Controlled Gaming Premises Certificate of Approval and/or Gaming Premises Certificate of Approval that it has streamlined the processes related to gaming devices.
“The Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) would like to notify all licensees that hold a Controlled Gaming Premises Certificate of Approval and/or Gaming Premises Certificate of Approval that we have streamlined the processes related to gaming devices to improve the quality and consistency of our work by ensuring that our practices are compliant with operating standards,” the MGA noted.
“We are therefore issuing a new guidance note to help you understand the standardised processes and the requirements to be submitted for each process. These revised processes shall come into force as of 1 December 2023.
“We would also like to express the importance of your cooperation in submitting complete applications, as defined in the guidance note, allowing the MGA to work diligently and coordinate the required work efficiently.”
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