Brazilian sports court calls for ban and fine for Textor over match-fixing allegations

July 8 – Concluding an investigation into accusations of match-fixing by John Textor, Brazil’s Superior Court of Sports Justice for Football (STJD) has recommended a six-year suspension and R2 million ($550.000) fine for the American, describing his evidence is “worthless”. 

Ever since Botafogo lost 4-3 to Palmeiras last year, Textor has launched a series of accusations of match manipulation at the address of referees and other clubs, based on a report by ‘Good Game’, but his claims and evidence did not convince the STJD.

“After a thorough analysis, the processing Auditor concluded that the evidence was ‘worthless’ and constituted sporting offences against honour committed by John Textor against seven sporting entities, nine athletes and nine referees,” said the STJD.

“In addition, infractions against sporting ethics and personal motivation were found in requesting the initiation of the investigation.”

In March, Textor said he had evidence that Brazilian league matches were being manipulated and presented it to the STJD for consideration in the investigation. A month later, he also published a text on his website stating that the game between Palmeiras and São Paulo was manipulated.

The STJD has also suggested forwarding the case to a Rio de Janeiro court Court of Justice as it involves criminal offences.

It wrote: “Considering that in theory the criminal offences of False Reporting and False Reporting of a Crime have been configured, forward a full copy of this Inquiry to the Attorney General of Rio de Janeiro, Dr. Luciano Oliveira Mattos de Souza, for the measures he deems necessary.”

In a response, Textor wrote on his website that: “It is an unprecedented fact, in any civilized society, that a whistleblower who requests an investigation be punished, especially when there are credible claims based on expert testimony.”

“Serious questions must be asked about the STJD Auditor, Mr. Mauro Marcelo de Lima e Silva, who appears to be acting according to someone else’s agenda. In addition to the disproportionate penalties recently suggested in his report, I am dismayed that my good faith search for elucidation of facts and elements of match-fixing has led to serious accusations against me.”

He also cast doubt over the neutrality of the auditor, accusing him of being a Palmeiras supporter. 

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