‘Match-fixing has been going on for years in Dutch football’

The following story is a short summary of a story in Dutch newspaper ‘De Volkskrant’, a summary in Dutch can be found here. 

‘Over the last ten years, Dutch football games have been manipulated on a frequent basis’. The words of Paul R. in todays Volkskrant. Paul R. is the main Dutch suspect in a huge German investigation on match-fixing. This is the first time he has spoken out openly about the situation in the Netherlands. The Dutch newspaper says the comments of Paul R. confirm the findings of the research they have been doing over the last few months.

Paul R. claims he is innocent and was just an intermediary who gambled for others on the Asian betting market. The 54 year old Dutchman has been imprisoned since November 2012 in Dordrecht, after being arrested for curing stolen paintings. He will be extradicted to Germany in the fall of this year, as he is being suspected of manipulating eleven football matches in several countries.

In prison, Volkskrant were allowed to ask him a number of questions of which Paul R. answered a few. He states he got into the gambling industry through casino visits. He has been a professional gambler in the past. According to Paul R., experts can recognize the games that are fixed when they’re visiting the gambling site by monitoring the quota of matches and bets closely. He is surprised he hasn’t been asked about match-fixing in the Netherlands by the court of Justice or the Olfers committee of inquiry.’They should ask the right specialists [ about these things].’

Dutch clubs are often named in official reports on match-fixing. Among others a UEFA Cup-game of AZ in 2005 is named in a confidential UEFA report on match-fixing. Members of the house of representatives have been shocked. PvdA-member Tjeerd van Dekken is adamant ‘a justitial inquiry should be started sooner than later’, SP-member Renske Leijten says the current situation is ‘a threat to the game’.

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