Minister urges thorough probe into match-fixing

26th January 2005, Comments 0 comments

26 January 2005 , HAMBURG - Interior Minister Otto Schily called on football bosses to get to the bottom of a match-fixing affair involving a referee which has rocked the sport in Germany and looked like deepening further on Wednesday. Stern magazine, in a report made available ahead of Thursday's publication, suggested that the referee involved, Robert Hoyzer, allegedly was in contact with organised crime in Berlin. Harald Stenger, spokesman of the German football federation (DFB) said that "we have heard

26 January 2005

HAMBURG - Interior Minister Otto Schily called on football bosses to get to the bottom of a match-fixing affair involving a referee which has rocked the sport in Germany and looked like deepening further on Wednesday.

Stern magazine, in a report made available ahead of Thursday's publication, suggested that the referee involved, Robert Hoyzer, allegedly was in contact with organised crime in Berlin.

Harald Stenger, spokesman of the German football federation (DFB) said that "we have heard of these indications as well" but that the DFB could not assess whether the allegations were true.

The DFB and Berlin prosecutors are investigating whether Hoyzer bet on games at which he officiated in the German cup, second and third divisions, and then manipulated the outcome.

In particular, the DFB is looking into a cup match between Paderborn and Bundesliga club SV Hamburg, which Paderborn won 4-2 with the help of two disputed penalties. Some second and third- division games are under investigation as well.

Hoyzer has protested his innocence and his lawyer on Wednesday attacked the DFB on how it handled the case.

Schily said the whole affair must be completely cleared up to spare German football from damage.

"All referees must support the DFB and the prosecution to clear up any suspicious cases. German referees have a good reputation abroad. This should not be put at risk," Schily said in a column published in the Bild daily.

Schily also expressed his belief that the vast majority of German referees were highly professional and committed no wrongdoing.

Braunschweig prosecutors handed the case over to their colleagues in Berlin after initially starting their own preliminary investigations because Hoyzer is registered in the area.

The head of the DFB referee commission, Hellmut Krug, told the Berliner Zeitung daily that his organisation was aware of Hoyzer's controversial calls, which were "an issue internally."

Krug added that there were no DFB observers on hand at the controversial games Hoyzer officiated because they are only mandatory at Bundesliga games.

Hoyzer's lawyer Stephan Holthoff-Pfoertner, whose past clients include former German chancellor Helmut Kohl, attacked the DFB in an interview with the Neue Ruhr Zeitung daily.

"The way the DFB behaved towards my client during a hearing on Friday had nothing to to with a hearing but an execution," said Holthoff-Pfoertner.

"The story I heard (when he met with Hoyzer Tuesday) is completely different than the one the DFB made public," he added. 

DPA

Subject: German news 

 

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