Two men from Australia have been charged with match fixing offenses relating to the Chinese League of Legends Pro League (LPL) dating back to June 2021. Police allege the two 25-year-olds “were arranging to throw matches” with numerous games impacted.
Victorian Police in Australia arrested two 25-year-old men on alleged match fixing offenses tied to China’s League of Legends Pro League on May 17.
Police have charged the pair with two separate offenses: one on the “use of corrupt conduct information for betting purposes” and the other on “engaging in conduct that corrupts or would corrupt a betting outcome of event or event contingency.”
The latter offense typically pertains to directly impacting the result of a match, such as playing poorly or bribing players. The former refers to using insider information to make bets.
“The investigation commenced after police received information from a betting agency about activity linked to a number of matches in the League of Legends Pro League on 8 June ,” the release stated.
While the police statement doesn’t specify what games were reportedly fixed — or whether they actually took place on June 8 — two games were played on that day for LPL Summer 2021. Rare Atom swept Oh My God 2-0, while current World champions Edward Gaming beat Bilibili Gaming 2-1.
If found guilty, the pair face up to 10 years in jail.
Detective Acting Superintendent Wayne Woltsche added “esports is an emerging sporting industry that only continues to get more popular.
“However with that also comes an increase not only in those wanting to bet on outcomes, but also in those willing to try and take advantage of the systems for their own gain.”
Victorian Police has had a hand in a number of esports betting offenses in the past, including the arrest of six Counter-Strike players back in August 2019. Official charges were laid in May 2020.
It also comes in the aftermath of numerous betting scandals in the LPL across the last 15 months.
Back in April 2021, 38 players and coaches across both the top-flight League of Legends competition and the LDL development league were banned after a Riot investigation found systemic match fixing in the league.
A year later in April 2022, LGD Gaming mid laner Chen ‘Jay’ Bo was banned permanently for suspected match fixing.
The Australian duo will face court over the charges in September.
Dexerto has contacted Victorian Police for further comment.