Administrative bodies representing some of the most popular sports in Australia have recently appealed to the federal government to ask for new laws that could help clamp down on bookmakers who try to manipulate and corrupt sportspersons for illegal sports betting. Some of the biggest sports of the country like cricket, NRL, AFL, tennis, rugby unions, soccer and netball have representation in the said lobby group which wants a new federal law to be formed in accordance with the sports betting laws of Victoria and which would apply to all regions of the country in order to provide a deterrent to the people who introduce corruption into sports through illegal sports betting businesses.
There was a meeting between Mark Arbib, the federal sports minister, and the Coalition of Major Professional and Participation Sports a couple of days ago to look into the possibilities of such a unified national law being drafted. James Sutherland, who is the chairman of the coalition, said yesterday that the criminal legislation which currently exists in the country is very inconsistent and doesn’t specifically tackle the problem of corruption in sports. There is a need for a solid deterrent for the people who try to corrupt sportsmen or other people involved who can alter the course of events in a game, he added.
Later this month, Arbib will be attending a seminar organized by the International Olympic Committee on the ways to tackle the issue of illegal sports betting across Europe. While with federal laws it becomes much easier to unify a national approach against the problem, the fact remains that most of the biggest sportsbook businesses operate from outside Australia and an international consensus and cooperation is needed to effectively fight the problem.