AFL news 2022: Four men arrested over Brownlow Medal betting scandal

The Victoria Police Sporting Integrity Intelligence Unit, in conjunction with the AFL, investigated the release of voting tallies which resulted in Victoria Police arresting four people over alleged illegal betting on the outcome.

The AFL’s Brownlow Medal went under investigation thanks to suspicious betting activity on the 2022 count.

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“It’s alleged that a person with knowledge of the voting tally of these matches distributed the information to a group of people known to them,” a Victoria Police statement said.

On Monday, the AFL confirmed that one of the four people arrested in relation to the investigation was an umpire.

“In the days following the 2022 Brownlow Medal count, the AFL was made aware of potential suspicious activity by one of our betting agency partners and the AFL Integrity unit immediately gathered further information,” AFL EGM Football and General Counsel Andrew Dillon said in a statement.

“Given the nature of the alleged activity we engaged Sports Integrity Australia and Victoria Police to assist with the matter.

“I want to stress that neither Victoria Police, nor the AFL have information to suggest that the outcome of the Brownlow Medal was impacted as the allegations relate solely to the leaking or improper communication of the 3,2,1 voting outcomes of some specific matches during the season.

“Post-game, the Brownlow votes are sealed and stored in a secure off-site location and not opened until they are delivered on stage on Brownlow night. The sealed vote cards are audited throughout the season by KPMG.”

The investigation is still ongoing to uncover how many matches had votes released and the size of the bets.

Police raided properties at Glenroy, Kilsyth, Oak Park, Drouin, Craigieburn and Doreen. Several mobile phones and other electronic items were seized in the raids.

While Patrick Cripps claimed a nailbiting victory, the investigation is said to be looking into spot betting rather than the overall winner.

“At this stage, police have no information to suggest that the outcome of the votes were impacted as the allegations relate solely to the distribution of information,” the statement said.

The men arrested were two 32-year-olds from Glenroy, a 29-year-old man from Oak Park and a 27-year-old man from Drouin.

“All four men are currently in custody assisting police with their inquiries and the investigation is ongoing,” the Victoria Police statement said.

“The criminal offences police are investigating are engaging in conduct that corrupts or would corrupt a betting outcome of event or event contingency, and using corrupt conduct information for betting purposes. These offences carry up to 10 years’ imprisonment.”

AFL statement

The AFL confirms it has been informed that the Victoria Police Sporting Integrity Intelligence Unit have arrested four people in relation to an investigation into suspicious betting activity linked to round-by-round betting on this year’s Brownlow Medal count.

The suspicious betting activity, on bets placed on round-by-round vote getters, triggered a response and notification by one of the AFL’s betting agency partners.

Upon receiving this information, the AFL Integrity unit worked with the AFL’s betting partners to gather further information and in conjunction with Sports Integrity Australia and Victoria Police undertook an investigation.

The AFL and Victoria Police have no information to suggest that the awarding of match day votes was impacted in connection with the suspicious betting activity, as the allegations relate solely to the distribution leaking or improper communication of the 3,2,1 voting outcomes post some specific matches during the season to unauthorised persons.

Brownlow Medal round-by-round betting markets only open post the home and away season.

Victoria Police has informed the AFL that one of the four persons arrested this morning is an AFL umpire.

The AFL will continue to assist Victoria Police with the on-going investigation.

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