UEFA Calls Penalty, Bans Manchester City from Champions League for Two Seasons

Last week, the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) made waves among the soccer universe when it announced Manchester City Football Club (Man City) has been banned from  the Champions League for two years, as well as fined 30 million euros (roughly 32.4 million USD). 

First, some brief background. In 2018, emails were hacked and released that showed senior officials within Man City discussing implicit attempts to circumvent UEFA’s financial regulations. According to Spiegel International, a German newspaper, the released articles demonstrated that – among …

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Signs and Signals and Trashcans, Oh My! Astros Cheating Scheme Exposed

Sports scandals are not a foreign concept to fans, players, coaches, owners, and the like. For example, on March 2, 2012, the NFL announced it had evidence of the New Orleans Saints’ “bounty system that gave cash rewards for knocking [opposing players] out of games” during the 2009-2011 NFL seasons. Somewhat similar, MLB is experiencing something that, while less dangerous, is just as detrimental to the integrity of the sport.

Baseball catchers use signs and signals to determine what type of pitch will be thrown …

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NCAA Game Rigging Scheme: From Working in Politics to Working with the Mafia

Benjamin Bifalco, a 25-year-old former political staffer for a New York State Assemblyperson, was arrested in October 2019 for his role in attempting to rig an NCAA basketball game. He is expected to plead guilty on the charges.

Previously, we reported Bifalco was charged with violating 18 U.S.C. Section 224(a), which makes it unlawful to influence a sporting contest “in any way, by bribery. . . .” Per the indictment, Bifalco is alleged to have “knowingly and intentionally attempt[ed] to . . . influence by …

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Feds Discover NCAA Game Rigging Attempt, Mafia Connected

On October 3, 2019, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York unsealed a series of indictments against alleged crime family La Cosa Nostra (the Colombo Family). Among those arrested were Benjamin Bifalco, an associate of the Colombo Family, and Joseph Amato Jr., the son of an alleged Colombo Family captain Joseph Amato.

Bifalco was charged with violating 18 U.S.C. Section 224(a), which makes it unlawful to influence a sporting contest “in any way, by bribery. . . .” Per the …

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FIFA Bans Brazilian Soccer Official

On April 15, 2019, Jose Maria Marin, a Brazilian soccer official, was officially banned for life by the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA). In August 2018, the 86-year-old Marin was sentenced to four years in United States prison for racketeering, money laundering, and wire fraud. According to FIFA, Marin was also guilty of taking bribes linked to media and marketing rights for South American and Brazilian soccer competitions. During his 2017 trial, federal prosecutors said that Marin received $6.6 million in bribes and was …

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Former Louisville Basketball Players Sue NCAA

In February 2018, the University of Louisville men’s basketball program was forced to vacate 123 wins from the 2011-2014 seasons. This included Louisville’s 2013 national championship, making Louisville the first university to have to vacate a national title. The program was forced to vacate these wins and pay fines by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) due to multiple NCAA infractions. The infractions revolved around former staff member Andre McGee of the men’s basketball team allegedly hiring exotic dancers and escorts to entice recruits to …

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NFL Players Association Files Grievance Over League Anthem Policy

On Tuesday, July 11, the NFL Player Association (NFLPA) filed a grievance against the league over its new national anthem policy. The policy was announced in May 2018 after a wave of peaceful on-field protests by current players during the past NFL season. The players were protesting police brutality towards the African-American community as well as systematic racism. Nevertheless, the players and league itself received criticism and outrage from President Donald Trump and other conservatives over the player’s decision to protest by kneeling during the …

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Former Florida Circuit Judge Faces Disciplinary Action Over Tampa Bay Tickets

On June 22, 2018, a referee’s report was returned regarding former Florida circuit court judge John Lakin and his use of baseball tickets that had been gifted to him by counsel while their motion was pending in his court.

While presiding over a personal injury case in 2015, Lakin returned a defense verdict.  The next day, Lakin was offered Tampa Bay Rays tickets from plaintiff’s counsel, whose firm was known to regularly give such tickets out within the legal community.  Lakin accepted.  About a week …

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Bucks Guard Sues Milwaukee Police Over Racial Profiling Incident

Milwaukee Bucks shooting guard Sterling Brown filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against the City of Milwaukee, the chief of the Milwaukee Police Department (“MPD”) and eight other MPD officers and sergeants in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin. Brown claims the defendants violated his civil and constitutional rights and applied excessive and brutal force while unlawfully arresting him. The suit arises out of the highly publicized incident that took place on Friday, January 26 at 2 a.m.

Brown was parked …

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Online Betting Co. Sued By Former Employee

On Monday, June 18, 2018, online horse racing platform Xpressbet LLC was sued in Pennsylvania federal court by former employee John Martinez. Xpressbet allows users to bet live horse races legally online. Martinez claims he was demoted and subsequently fired because he took medical leave.

Martinez brings his complaint to recover all available damages for violations under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act (PHRA).

Martinez started working at Xpressbet in 2015

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