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French football rocked by match fixing scandal

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French football rocked by match fixing scandal
Caen's fans celebrate their team's promotion to French Ligue 1 at the end of their match against Nimes in May 2013. But was it fixed? Photo: AFP
11:15 CET+01:00
Police carried out raids on numerous homes on Tuesday and arrested the presidents of two clubs, who are suspected of fixing or attempting to fix football matches in France’s second division.

Among those arrested according to Le Parisien newspaper was the president of Caen, Jean-François Fortin and the president of Nîmes Olympique, Jean-Marc Conrad.

In all there were around ten arrests made, all related to the suspected fixing of matches in the 2013-2014 season.

The two men arrested are suspected of rigging a match between their two clubs in May 2013, so that it ended in a draw.

That result ensured that Caen would be promoted to France’s top division and Nîmes Olympique would avoid relegation to the third tier.

According to Le Parisien, French police are looking at several games played by Nîmes last year, suspecting that they too may also have been rigged.

Police suspicions were first raised when they were investigating a separate case against former Nîmes shareholder Serge Kasparian and his casino empire Cercle Cadet.

In a separate case, three of the directors of the club Olympique Marseille have also been arrested on Tuesday, accused of misuse of company funds in relation to the transfer of striker Andre-Pierre Gignac from Toulouse to Marseille in 2010 for €18 million.

Current club president Vincent Labrune; Jean-Claude Dassier, who held the post from 2009 to 2011 and current CEO Philip Perez are under police investigation, suspected of paying kickbacks to middlemen.

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