Man faces Belgian match-fixing charges
Updated: 2006-03-03 09:20
BRUSSELS, March 2 (Reuters) - Belgian police intend to charge a Chinese
businessman who they believe is the key figure in their match-fixing
investigation, a spokeswoman for the federal prosecutor said on Thursday.
"It is not a case of if but when Zheyun Ye is charged and we will be
issuing an international arrest warrant for his arrest," Lieve Pellens told
Ye was arrested by police as part of their investigation in November, but was
later released without charge.
"Although he is the key figure in our investigation, he didn't work alone,"
Belgium has no extradition treaty with China, but the Belgian authorities are
working hard at reaching a deal in relation to this case, Pellens said. It is
believed the 40-year-old businessman has returned to his home country.
Belgium has also sent letters to Britain and Finland seeking permission to
take their investigation to those countries, Pellens confirmed.
"In the UK, the betting exchange Betfair have told us they are willing to
help us with whatever information we require and details on those who were
involved in the betting," she said.
"Ye also had or still has connections in Finland with a football club there."
The Chinese businessman owned a share in Finnish club FC Alliansi.
Pellens confirmed that five Belgian first division clubs are currently under
investigation, but would only reveal that Lierse, La Louviere and Sint Truiden
were three of the clubs involved.
"The net is a lot bigger and the number of individuals involved is greater
than that," Pellens said.