Eleven held in soccer bribery scandal

Suspected match throwers include goalkeepers Oshri Levy and Meir Cohen.

soccer ball 88 (photo credit: Courtesy)
soccer ball 88
(photo credit: Courtesy)
The police investigative team probing the alleged match fixing in Israeli soccer arrested 11 soccer players and officials on suspicion of involvement in the case, it was reported on Tuesday morning. The eleven are suspected of crimes including accepting bribes to influence the outcome of matches, fraudulent registration to an organization, forgery and several tax offenses. The suspects include former Hapoel Kfar Saba goalkeeper Oshri Levy, Upper Nazareth owner Shalom Uriel, Hapoel Upper Nazareth player Ami Azulay and Bnei Sachnin goalkeeper Meir Cohen. Israel Radio reported that five of the suspects were set to be released, while police were due to request a remand extension for the other six later Tuesday. The scandal has expanded into a nationwide hunt for 'dirty' players and Police Chief Insp.-Gen. Moshe Karadi has made assurances that the police plan to cooperate with the Israel Football Association in the effort to eradicate illegal gambling from Israeli soccer. The Council for Sports Gambling has decided on several measures to fight match fixing, with chairman Gidon Brickman offering to fund a special police task force that will combat illegal gambling.