Leading local and international experts from the sporting and racing industries will converge in Melbourne today as part of a joint Victoria Police and Sport and Recreation Victoria symposium highlighting sporting integrity issues.
This year’s event, ‘Equipping the Sports Industry to Address Emerging Integrity Threats’, will highlight the ongoing domestic and international measures being taken to combat sports corruption.
The symposium, to be officially opened by Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events Martin Pakula and closed by Chief Commissioner Graham Ashton, will invite presentations from Victoria Police and notable guest speakers from Australia and abroad.
It will cover topics such as integrity and match-fixing; growing trends in e-sports betting and related threats; implications of court-sider activity; and building resilience, managing stress and improving work and personal relationships within the sports industry.
Stakeholders will also be given an insight into the work of Victoria Police’s own Sporting Integrity Intelligence Unit (SIIU), which has seen much success across soccer, tennis and harness racing investigations since being established in 2013.
Assistant Commissioner Neil Paterson said the conference would once again invite key areas of law enforcement, government and sporting and racing codes to gather and share ideas and experiences in relation to integrity issues.
“Sport is a worldwide industry and in order to keep it fair, successful and as untarnished as possible, sporting integrity must remain a key focus for law enforcement both in Australia and overseas,” AC Paterson said.
“Unfortunately sport is no stranger to issues such as match-fixing and gambling, but collaborative forums like this mean we can remain on the forefront when it comes to detecting, addressing and combatting emerging threats to its integrity.
AC Paterson also said the annual symposium complemented the SIIU’s focus on collecting and sharing intelligence related to sporting integrity and mitigating the risk of infiltration by organised crime.
“In Melbourne especially, we pride ourselves on having a rich sporting culture and identity and we want to ensure our passion for sport is not compromised by those groups and individuals trying to profit from this through criminal activity.”
The SIIU works with all racing and sporting bodies to boost knowledge and awareness of identified integrity issues across all sporting codes.