• Posted on: 14 August 2016

Interpol was reported to have arrested over 4000 people in well coordinated raids as they clamp down on illegal soccer gambling.

Interpol carries out the raid across eleven different countries during the Euro 2016 continental tournament in France. The latest global operation was mounted against illegal gambling and the operation in China, France, Malaysia, Singapore, Greece, Thailand, Vietnam, and Italy. The operation SOGA VI is the sixth investigation into football gambling by Interpol, the organization that facilitates cross-border policing, according to the Guardian.

SOGA is short for “soccer gambling” and has bedevilled the game and people for long, so the raid was to cut on the illicit operation. Another operation called Aces is well targeted at illicit betting websites and call centre operations in Cambodia, South Korea, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam.

The global police body said they seized £10 million in the two operations but the agency estimates that during the continental tournament £500 million was estimated to have been exchanged in bets in illegal gambling dens. The head of the Interpol anti corruption and financial crimes unit Jimi Anderson said: “Illegal gambling generates massive profits for organized crime networks which are often linked to corruption, human trafficking and money laundering.”

The six soccer gambling operations have yielded 12,500 arrests where £40 million have been seized. 3,400 operations have been closed with bets worth £4.85 billion, according to Interpol. Interpol has been coordinating the anti sport gambling operations, making arrests and seizing for several years now. The big international operators are vulnerable to the fraud and are where the funds are gotten from and it supports match fixing. The crackdown on the smaller one tends to be counter-intuitive as they are cut off from the act but enhance the operation of the mega-illegal operators.