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Australia’s Northern Territory introduces new match-fixing penalties

21st August 2013 7:07 am GMT

The government of Australia’s Northern Territory has passed legislation to impose serious penalties on those found guilty of match-fixing in the state in a bid to combat cheating and fraud in sports betting.

A series of amendments to the territory’s Criminal Code (Cheating at Gambling) Bill sees the introduction of five new offences, with those found guilty to be jailed for up to 7 years.

Engaging or facilitating in conduct that corrupts a betting outcome will be punished with a maximum penalty of 7 years imprisonment, while those convicted of concealing conduct or an agreement about conduct that corrupts betting from authorities will be hit with the same sentence.

Those found guilty of using information gained through corrupt conduct to bet will also face 7 years in jail, and those who use inside information to determine where they place bets are liable to be imprisoned for up to two years.

The territory’s Attorney-General John Elferink said the measures would act as a deterrent to those looking to engage in match-fixing, helping “protect the integrity of Australian sport.”

Minister for Sport and Recreation Matt Conlan added there was “no place” for match-fixing, and that the amendments would “safeguard” sport in the territory.

“Territorians want, and expect, our elite athletes and sporting competitions to be clean,” Conlan said. “The Territory Government has introduced this important legislation after I attended a meeting of all Australian Sport Ministers in February and the former Labor Government stalled its progress.”

The new laws are the latest measures taken to combat match-fixing in Australia following the launch of a national match-fixing education programme by the country’s National Integrity of Sport Unit last week.

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