Brazil’s senate to set up commission to investigate match-fixing

March 13 – The Brazilian senate is to establish a parliamentary commission to investigate match-fixing in the Brazilian game. 

Senator Romario (pictured), the former Barcelona striker and 1994 World Cup winner, referred to a recent report from data company Sportradar that identified 109 suspicious matches in Brazil in 2023. Sportradar collects match data and supplies it to betting operators, and also offers integrity services.

Earlier this week, the public prosecutor of the Federal District and Territories (MPDFT) launched Operation End of Game, aimed at investigating the match-fixing in the Candangão. The operation targeted Nathan Henrique Gama da Silva and Alexandre Batista, two players from the Santa Maria club, according to local media. Two matches against Gama and Ceila are under suspicion.

Romario requested to establish the CPI last week. In Brazil, a CPI has sweeping powers, including breaking banking secrecy, fiscal secrecy, data secrecy, and telephone secrecy.

Last year the Brazilian government introduced legislation that legalised betting in the country, but provided little measures to combat match-fixing. In 2023, a sprawling investigation revealed that players in the state of Goias were allegedly offered thousands of dollars by criminal syndicates in return for spot-fixing.

The Brazilian FA, CBF, has largely sat on the fence, but recently former Rio de Janeiro Attorney General Eduardo Gussem assumed the new role of integrity officer at the organisation.

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