Reports are coming in pertaining to a huge illegal gambling scandal in Korea’s StarCraft leagues. A group of current and former professional StarCraft players are being accused of match-rigging and illegal betting, after evidence has been released of them having contact with illegal gambling organizations. There are also accusations against coaching staff, a league reporter and announcer, and even league directors.
Illegal gambling has grown around Korean StarCraft leagues since around 2006, but grew especially large in 2008, which is when the betting organizations are reported to have begun contacting players about rigging. Former professional players that worked in the league would make offers to current players, provide leaked replays, or change player entries for money. Since throwing a match often proved much more profitable than the prizes that were available, the gambling problems began to grow out of control.
E-sports organizers are said to have known about the gambling and were taking steps to solve the issue, but were unable to slow the growth of the illegal activities. There are even reports that the illegal betting sites threatened the e-sports organizers, stating that unless they were allowed to coexist they would release a list of all the players involved. Police are currently becoming more involved, but will likely focus on the the betting sites and not e-sports organizers or their players.
All of this information has come to light due to recent flurry of leaks and whistle-blowing online. Lists of players involved in illegal betting have appeared, but it’s difficult to ascertain who is truly guilty or not, considering the forum. E-sports organizers and teams are attempting to force those accused to retire, but it’s difficult to say what sort of effect they can have.
Game Rant will make sure to keep you informed should any further updates arise.
Source: Team Liquid