The case of "strange" game in Belarus Extraliga becomes a criminal trial

The case of "strange" game in Belarus Extraliga becomes a criminal trial

Davide Tuniz26 Apr 2020Davide Tuniz»

Last November a game of Extraliga had raised suspicions, now become real


The game of Belarus Extraliga played in Maladzyechna last 22 November immediately seemed strange: home side Dinamo as favorite was easily winning 5-1 against weak opponent HK Mogilev in the third period even if the climate inside the club was turbulent due to problems with non-payment of salaries. With the comfortable score, the experienced Russian goalie Alexei Ivanov was replaced by back-up Nikita Tolopilo who conceded a second goal. In the third period Ivanov was back in the net and suffered three goals very quickly, before the winning one, scored by Artem Shapiro for an unexpected 5-6 victory

Last week the Prosecutor General’s Office of the Republic of Belarus announced the filing of a criminal case against four Dinamo Maladzyechna hockey players - goalie Alexei Ivanov, defenders Sergei Sheleg, Nikita Ustinenko and Aleksandr Syrei for illegal compensation, influenced the result of the home match of the Belarusian championship against Mogilev. In total, seven hockey players were involved in the case, however, against Vyacheslav Lisichkin, Pavel Boyarchuk and Stanislav Kuchkin, a decision was made to terminate the criminal prosecution on non-rehabilitating grounds (in connection with active repentance). Three more (Dmitry Ambrozheychik, Artem Volkov and Nikita Feoktistov) knew about the upcoming "agreement", but refused to participate personally in the commission of the crime even if not report forthcoming illegal actions to the management of the club and the Federation.  Also during the investigation it was found that the assistant coach  Igor Krivoshlyk between August and November 2019, personally and through third parties, made more than 20 bets on the matches of the Cup and the championship of Belarus. After researching the devices of the defendants by law enforcement agencies, it was revealed that Ivanov, Sheleg, Ustinenko and Syrei also distributed pornographic content in chat rooms. So the players are charged not only with receiving illegal remuneration for participating in a contract match, but with distributing pornography on the Internet. The next court hearing in the case will be held on May 7.

Because all the seven players were pleaded guilty to committing a crime, the Belarus Federation fined all with a fine between 500,000 and 1,000,000 Russian rubles (from about seven to fifteen thousand dollars) and suspended them until May 31. The game was counted as a technical defeat for Dinamo and the statistics of hockey players in this game were cancelled.

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