Two Men Arrested For Alleged League of Legends Match Fixing
Two 25-year-old men are facing charges of up to ten years in prison after Victorian Police in Australia arrested them in connection with alleged match-fixing in the League of Legends Pro League, China's top-tier esports competition.
Both men, from Brooklyn and Kingsville respectively, are set to appear in front of the Magistrates Court in Melbourne following the arrest, having been charged with two separate offences.
The first offence is detailed as the "use of corrupt conduct information for betting purposes" while the other is "engaging in conduct that corrupts or would corrupt a betting outcome of an event or event contingency," and both are in relation to LPL matches from the 2021 Summer Split.
Two Men Arrested For Alleged LPL Match Fixing
Both men were arrested on May 17 in relation to match fixing, with a released statement from the Police detailing that they received information from a betting agency of patterns and activity to a number of LPL matches on June 8.
It's unclear whether the report implicates any individual matches on that day, or ones prior, although the fixtures on June 8 related to those of soon-to-be World Champions EDward Gaming vs Bilibili Gaming (a rather pivotal result on a global scale by seeding EDG in the top two of the LPL Playoffs) and Oh My God vs Rare Atom.
"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," said Detective Acting Superintendent, Wayne Woltsche, State Intelligence Division, in a statement.
"We’ve developed strong relationships with a number of esports stakeholders and betting agencies, and we’ll continue to work together to target any suspicious activity."
LPL Match Fixing Is A Crisis
The second charge of "engaging in conduct that corrupts or would corrupt a betting outcome of an event or event contingency," is one that often refers to bribery or blackmail, which mirrors the pervious match-fixing problems with the LPL.
Most recently, Chen "Jay" Bo was permanently banned from League of Legends esports for suspected match fixing, in which he was alleged to be purposely throwing selected matches.
This came just 12 months after 38 coaches and players were banned in a mass exodus of alleged match-fixing perpetrators across both the LPL and the LDL Development League.
The arrested men are expected to appear in court in September, which could then implicate Chinese teams, and even the World Champions.