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'I Helped Honduras And Nigeria Reach 2010 World Cup' Claims Match-fixer

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'I helped Honduras and Nigeria reach 2010 World Cup' claims match-
Wilson Raj Perumal has admitted part in fixing syndicate
Details meeting with official over deal to help Nigeria qualify
Owen Gibson
Monday 28 April 2014 07.21 EDT
A Singaporean match-fixer has claimed he helped two international
sides qualify for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
Wilson Raj Perumal, a self-confessed match-fixer who was part of a
syndicate that has been placed at the heart of a sophisticated network
responsible for fixing hundreds of matches around the world, claims in
a new book that he assisted Honduras and Nigeria in reaching the
World Cup through his activities.
Perumal had already admitted to being part of a syndicate that fixed a
string of international friendlies by bribing corrupt officials and
compromised players, but this is the first time that he has claimed to
have influenced World Cup qualifiers.
Perumal was arrested in Helsinki in 2011 and sentenced to two years
in prison. He agreed to co-operate with the authorities and implicated
his fellow Singaporean Dan Tan, alleged to be at the heart of the fixing
and gambling ring that placed bets on illicit Chinese markets.
Last year Europol alleged that more than 380 professional matches in
Europe and more than 300 matches played in Africa, Asia and central
and South America were under suspicion as the scale of the activities
of match-fixing gangs from eastern Europe and Asia became clear.
Perumal's book, written in conjunction with the investigative journalists
Alessandro Righi and Emanuele Piano, details the huge sums of money
he won and lost – up to €3m in a single night – and the huge reach of
the match-fixing syndicate.
He claims that in 2009 he set up a company called Football4U as a
front to influence football players and officials. He claims he used an
associate called Bee Hoon to "make things happen" and ensure
Honduras won a match to qualify for the World Cup in South Africa.
Although he never placed a bet on the match, because Bee Hoon
wagered $200,000 of his own money and brought the odds down, he
says his influence helped ensure a win for Honduras, who remained
unaware of his intervention.
He then details a meeting with a football official in which he promises
to help Nigeria qualify for the World Cup in return for free rein in
organising three warm-up matches and a cut of the money Fifa
provides for hosting a training camp during the tournament. First, he
claims to influence three players on his payroll to help Nigeria to
victory in one of their qualifiers. Then he claims to have promised the
Mozambique FA a $100,000 bonus if they were able to hold Tunisia to
a draw and so stop Tunisia leapfrogging Nigeria and seizing automatic
qualification. Mozambique secured an unlikely 1-0 victory.
"My plan had worked and I was the unsung hero of Nigeria's
qualification to the final rounds of the 2010 Fifa World Cup in South
Africa," writes Perumal. "Ferrying Nigeria and Honduras to the World
Cup was a personal achievement. 'Bleep,' I considered. 'I got two
teams to qualify for the World Cup but I cannot tell anyone.'"
He also claims to have attempted unsuccessfully to bribe referees at
the World Cup itself. Perumal, who served a year of his sentence in
Finland after promising to co-operate with the authorities, claims to
have had a hand in or profited from fixed matches all over the globe,
from Latin America to Serie A.
They included two occasions on which he is alleged to have arranged
for bogus African teams to play official friendlies and deliver the
required result.
Perumal, who spent time living in the shadow of Wembley Stadium in
2010, also claims to have come up with the idea of bribing stadium
electricians in England to kill the floodlights during the second half of a
game if the score was advantageous.
Asian bookmakers paid out according to the score at the time the
match was abandoned, as long as the second half had kicked off.
Perumal claims the scheme was "sold" for $1m to a Malaysian timber
merchant via a Malaysian betting syndicate, who then targeted
matches in England.
Perumal also alleges that during a trip to England in 1995 he tried
unsuccessfully to bribe two Premier League goalkeepers. Perumal was
rearrested last week in Finland on an international arrest warrant. The
arrest is believed to relate to an earlier conviction in Singapore, rather
than to match-fixing.

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