Spanish police arrest professional tennis players for match fixing

As many as 28 professional tennis players are being investigated for possible match-fixing offenses, with one player thought to be a Grand Slam star.

European Union police agency Europol said the players were among 83 people detained by Spain's Civil Guard.

Spanish police raided 11 houses.

"Once they bribed the players, the Armenian network members attended the matches to ensure that the tennis players complied with what was previously agreed, and gave orders to other members of the group to go ahead with the bets placed at national and worldwide level", said Europol in a statement on Thursday.

According to the force, those responsible for the alleged fraud were engaged in bribing professional players in order to profit from bets placed on fixed matches.

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"The suspects bribed professional players to guarantee predetermined results and used the identities of thousands of citizens to bet on the pre-arranged games", Europol said.

Luxury vehicles, a shotgun, credit cards and 167,000 euros (£151,000) in cash were seized.

Forty-two bank accounts and their balances have been frozen. They also gave orders for "other members of the group" to place bets at the "national and global level".

Europol provided support, including sending three experts to Spain to provide "on-the-spot assistance including real-time cross-checks, IT forensic support and data analysis during the operation".

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