Tandy could face years behind bars - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Tandy could face years behind bars

By Ian McCullough 02/02/2011 07:21:46 PM Comments (0)

Canterbury prop Ryan Tandy could face up to five years behind bars if found guilty of providing false evidence to a law enforcement agency during the course of an investigation.

Tandy was charged on Wednesday by detectives from the NSW Crime Command's Racing and Casino Investigation Unit, following a probe into suspicious betting activity during an NRL clash between Canterbury and North Queensland in round 24 last year.

The 29-year-old has been granted conditional bail and will appear at the Downing Centre Local Court on Thursday March 3, just 11 days before he is due to play in the Bulldogs' season opener against Wests Tigers.

The alleged incident involved a betting plunge on the first points of the game to come from a penalty.

Suspicions were raised about Tandy's role after he was penalised for lying on Cowboys playmaker Grant Rovelli in front of the posts two minutes into the game at Dairy Farmers Stadium last August.

Tandy has vehemently denied any wrongdoing, but was arrested on Wednesday following searches on three properties in Bronte, in Sydney's eastern suburbs, as well as Strathfield and Punchbowl in the city's west.

Detective superintendent Arthur Katsogiannis, who is leading the investigation, said a number of documents and mobile phones had been seized 24 hours before Tandy's arrest.

"We are taking this matter very seriously, this is not a game, this is real life, and we will continue with our investigations in an endeavour to uncover the truth, and ensure justice is done," Katsogiannis told reporters.

"Investigators will continue to use every resource available to them, including working collaboratively to ensure, with other law enforcement agencies, it is conducted in a thorough manner.

"There could be serious ramifications, the offence carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison if found guilty."

Katsogiannis refused to speculate on whether he expected to make any further arrests, but maintained the investigation will continue, and that players from both the Cowboys and the Bulldogs had been interviewed.

He also said detectives had been working closely with the NRL and hoped to have the matter cleared up before the start of the new season in March.

"This has been a very difficult and challenging investigation ... we will continue with the investigation and want to finalise them as quickly as possible," he said.

"We want to ensure that not only do the public community have faith in what we do ... but in respect to other sporting event and sporting agencies."

NRL spokesman John Brady said the NRL would not be pushing for Tandy to be stood down at this stage, but the situation could change should more information come to light.

"A number of players have played when they have been charged, we do not have the information that allows us to take a view at the moment, it was a closed hearing, with the police before it goes to court," Brady told AAP.

"We need to give the police investigation full opportunity to determine what happened and that is our view at the moment."

Chief executive David Gallop praised the police's action and said he appreciated the time and resources involved investigating the matter.

"It remains a police matter and any comment on the investigations as they continue, should be through the police until we are advised otherwise," he said.

Bulldogs chief executive Todd Greenberg said in a brief statement the club would continue to cooperate with all requests from both NSW Police and the NRL.

Club officials refused to say if Tandy would be stood down.

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