INTERPOL and IOC regional workshop on sports integrity

26 November 2019
Protecting sports from corruption and organized crime

MEDELLIN, Colombia – INTERPOL and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) have jointly organized a regional workshop to prevent and effectively address competition manipulation in sport.

The event was the first such initiative to bring together law enforcement, National Olympic Committees, national sports federations and public authorities at regional level. Participants from Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Paraguay, Peru and Uruguay reviewed strategies, policies and legislation.

The workshop was organized in close collaboration with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and experts from Sportradar.

In his opening remarks, Baltazar Medina, President of the Colombian Olympic Committee said that multi-stakeholder partnerships were essential to implementing Olympic Agenda 2020, the strategic roadmap for the future of the Olympic Movement.

Colonel Jorge Wilson Serna Lopez of the INTERPOL National Central Bureau for Colombia stressed the timeliness of this workshop, as Colombia is currently finalizing new legislation to incriminate competition manipulation and protect sports from corruption and organized crime.

Pierre Lapaque, UNODC Representative in Colombia, said: “I would also like to voice my strong appreciation for the excellent partnership that UNODC has with INTERPOL and IOC. Joint activities such as this workshop add significant value to international efforts to strengthen integrity in sport.”

The event addressed current threats to the integrity of sport, sports betting developments and global crime trends in competition manipulation and related corruption.

It aimed to identify ways of preventing and responding to breaches jeopardizing the integrity of sports, in addition to identifying and aligning the efforts of key stakeholders in order to develop a coordinated approach via national platforms.

The workshop agenda included a review of INTERPOL’s global policing capabilities that assist member countries fight corruption in sport.

In this respect, the INTERPOL Match-Fixing Task Force (IMFTF) brings together law enforcement agencies from around the world to tackle match fixing and corruption in sport.

It supports member countries in match-fixing investigations and operations in all sports, and maintains a global network of match-fixing investigators so they can share information, intelligence and best practices.

The event concluded with participants recommending the creation of partnerships to address competition manipulation at national as well as regional levels, supported by INTERPOL, IOC and UNODC.

Organized under the framework of a 2014 cooperation agreement between INTERPOL and the IOC to build capacity to protect the integrity of sports, the workshop was held in parallel with the INTERPOL Global Anti-Corruption and Asset Recovery Global Conference in Medellin.