Match-fixing trial: Day one

The two Singapore businessmen charged with perpetrating English football’s biggest match-fixing scandal for decades targeted a Premier League referee, Birmingham Crown Court has heard.

Last Updated: 19/05/14 at 17:22 Post Comment

Chann Sankaran and Krishna Ganeshan are accused of bribery along with three former non-league players Michael Boateng, Hakeem Adelakun and Moses Swaibu, and faced their first day of trial on Monday.

Opening the prosecution, Robert Davies read aloud text messages between the defendants and, in one of these, one of the businessmen is alleged to have said he was going to London to meet an “experienced” referee who had officiated in Premier League games.

Ganeshan is then alleged to have sent texts saying he could not do anything with the referee because he was too experienced, and was going to look for referees at lower levels of the game instead.

Davies said that the accused were looking for “the perfect storm” of games, deliberately targeting the lower leagues and matches that were off the radar and that people would not pay much attention to.

The prosecutor alleged that these men wanted players who were not being paid the kind of money earned in the Premier League and that they found three willing recruits.

He then suggested that the two Singapore businessmen and one of the accused players, Moses Swaibu, attended a League Two game on November 26th 2013, between Wimbledon and Dagenham & Redbridge, and money changed hands between the three men at that game.

Davies also described how these men had come to court, with the investigation starting with Terry Steans - a private investigator who specialises in infiltrating match-fixing gangs.

Steans is said to have approached Sankaran, who told him he could get him players who would fix games in England but wanted to see money first. Steans said he was willing to pay up to £50,000 to get in touch with the players but wanted to see them face-to-face first.

In a comic turn, the court heard how Steans and Chann were trying to set up meetings with players in Starbucks and Burger King in Manchester but the players were not turning up – a situation that went on for weeks.

Another text message read aloud by Davies was from a middle-man to Ganeshan that said: “Bro, the two boys can’t make it tonight. It’s going to have to be Sunday.”

The prosecution also alleges there are big investors in Singapore and Asia behind the scandal, and that the defendants were constantly haggling over sums of £5,000, £20,000 and even £30,000.

The session ended with Davies saying to the jury: “If you consider all these pages of communications between these men, the only conclusion you can come to is that they were trying to fix games in this country.”

The trial continues.

 

More of the games that matter

2 years free Sky Broadband Unlimited for Sky Sports customers

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

H

ilarious, thanks for that. But if I may, I do suspect the reason of your partners' ire is not Tottenham, but most probably all the compusilve gambling :)

DannySmith
Backing Costa To Keep Banging 'Em In

T

wo police horses in a paddock. Horse 1: What's with the long face? Horse 2: I'm working St James Park this weekend.

hump3.
Pardew braced for protests

T

wo things. First, I can't stop reading your name as 'Dane Bowers'. Second, you used the words 'philosophy' and 'Redknapp' in the same sentence.

ajsr1982
Can United's Defence Handle Ulloa?

Footer 365

Premier League: Arsenal win 3-0 at Aston Villa to end the hosts' unbeaten start

Aston Villa’s unbeaten start to the season was ended by a devastating goal blitz as Arsenal enjoyed a 3-0 away win.

Premier League: Newcastle draw with Hull City as Papiss Cisse scores two

Substitute Papiss Cisse saved the day for Newcastle and under-fire manager Alan Pardew in their 2-2 draw with Hull City.

Premier League: Victor Wanyama earns Southampton 1-0 win at Swansea

Victor Wanyama broke the resistance of 10-man Swansea as Southampton left the Liberty Stadium with a 1-0 win.

Mail Box

Be Careful What You Wish For, Gooners

That's the message from a Man United fan in the mailbox. Plus, thoughts on Paul Lambert's new contract, the Alan Pardew dilemma at Newcastle and lots more...

No, Wenger IS To Blame For Failure...

The backlash to the backlash to the backlash sees Arsene Wenger getting a good kicking while we also have mails on Chelsea, Newcastle, Everton and lots more...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property