Regulatory Update | Gambling and Sports Integrity

May 22, 2024 | Compliance

SYDNEY, NSW, Australia (May 177, 2024) — The New South Wales Police Force have today arrested three A-League football players from Macarthur FC over an alleged betting scandal.


It was announced today that the NSW Police Organised Crime Squad Gaming Unit had been conducting a six-month investigation referred to as “Strike Force Beaconview”, into the alleged manipulation of yellow cards during A-League football matches for gambling purposes. It has been reported that detectives had found, allegedly, that Macarthur FC captain Ulises Davila had been instructed by a man believed to be in South America to “organise for yellow cards to occur during certain games in exchange for profit”. It is alleged that the players manipulated the number of yellow cards issued during games late last year, with Davila receiving a yellow card during a game against Melbourne Victory on 24 November 2023 and another against Sydney FC on 9 December 2023. Police also allege that two further attempts were unsuccessfully made to allegedly control the number of yellow cards issued during games between 20 April and 4 May 2024.

Davila, who recently signed on for a further two years with Macarthur FC, was arrested in South Coogee at 6am this morning upon the execution of search warrants. NSW Police also executed search warrants in Parramatta, West Hoxton and Emu Plains, and have arrested two other players, aged 27 and 32.

In a statement, Football Australia said that it “is fully cooperating with the Organised Crime Squad, Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission, Sport Integrity Australia and the NSW Crime Commission in this matter”. The A-Leagues has also expressed its cooperation with the investigation, saying that “the work to protect the integrity of our game must be unwavering and we are liaising closely with all relevant agencies on this matter”. It is understood that the United Kingdom Gambling Commission has played a role in the lengthy investigation.

Next Steps

The three players were expected to face court today. Davila is expected to be charged with two counts of engaging in conduct that corrupts a betting outcome of an event, and two counts of facilitating conduct that corrupts a betting outcome of an event. The two other players are expected to be charged with engaging in conduct that corrupts a betting outcome of an event.

We will continue to monitor this matter and provider further updates in due course. An ABC News article summarising the arrests can be accessed here.

Authors: Jamie Nettleton and Lachlan Gepp

SOOURCE: Lexology / Addisons

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