Two league identities charged over bets - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Two league identities charged over bets

By David Beniuk and Ian McCullough 03/03/2011 07:46:36 PM Comments (0)

Two men arrested in relation to an NRL betting scandal have been charged with attempting to defraud a number of betting agencies.

A 48-year-old man was arrested about 9.45am (AEDT) on Thursday at a home in Punchbowl in Sydney's southwest while a 49-year-old was arrested when he attended Campsie police station at 11am (AEDT) on Thursday.

Police did not name the two men, but media have named them as player agent Sam Ayoub and former first-grade player John Elias.

News Ltd said both had denied involvement in the alleged betting scandal.

"We will be alleging these individuals dishonestly placed bets," Detective Superintendent Arthur Katsogiannis told reporters on Thursday.

"These are serious allegations that go to the heart of the game."

Detectives from the NSW Crime Command's Casino and Racing Investigation Unit have been examining suspicious betting on an NRL clash between the Bulldogs and North Queensland last year.

The incident involved a plunge on a betting option that the first points of the game would come from a penalty goal.

Bulldogs player Ryan Tandy was penalised two minutes into the game for impeding Cowboys playmaker Grant Rovelli in front of the posts.

The Cowboys were awarded a penalty, but did not opt for a kick at goal and instead scored a try from a quick tap.

In Sydney's Downing Centre Local Court on Thursday, Tandy pleaded not guilty to four charges of giving false evidence to police investigating betting on two NRL games - the Cowboys match in August last year and a Bulldogs-Gold Coast match in June last year.

His bail was continued with the case adjourned for mention on April 7, when Tandy will not have to attend the court.

The two men arrested on Thursday have been granted conditional bail by police and are due to appear in the Downing Centre Local Court on April 7.

NRL chief executive David Gallop said the rugby league would survive the scandal.

"It's a seriously alarming development," he told reporters.

"I can't comment on the guilt or innocence of those that have been charged. What I can say is the game is strong in its resolve to investigate these types of issues, make sure that it's placed in the hands of the police quickly.

"We've done that on this occasion and we now need to let them and the court process play out."

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