CBC News has learned details of how a European crime syndicate bribed Canadian soccer players to fix a semi-professional game between Trois-Rivières and Toronto teams as part of an international match-fixing scheme to make money from online bets.
In an exclusive story led by CBC's senior investigative reporter Diana Swain that airs tonight on The National, CBC News reveals evidence of the match-fixed Canadian Soccer League game that surfaced in hundreds of hours of police wiretaps obtained by CBC News from a German court case on one of the largest sports-fixing scandals to hit Europe.
At least one game in the CSL, a semi-pro league operating in Ontario and Quebec as a feeder system for Canadian major league clubs, was compromised by match fixing, according to the German wiretap transcripts.
Wiretaps show the crime syndicate targeted a Sept. 12, 2009, game in Trois-Rivières between its home team, Attak, and the Toronto Croatia.
Court documents show that €15,000 ($18,000 Cdn) in bribes were paid to several players on the Toronto Croatia team.
Former Trois-Rivières player Reda Aggouram, who played in that game, told CBC News he had no idea that some players on the Toronto Croatia team were being paid to manipulate the game, but he does remember scoring an easy goal.
"I remember my goal, it was the free kick for us," said Aggouram. "One of our players took the free kick, and then the goalie, he didn't punch it away, he punched it in front of the net, and then I took the rebound."
The German court found that the Europe-based crime syndicate had manipulated a number of games, ranging from a Champions League contest to a qualifier for the 2010 World Cup.
The Canadian Soccer League, which is largely run by volunteers, was unaware of the verdict when approached by CBC News, even though it happened months earlier.
To date, six people have been convicted due to their roles in the match-fixing syndicate. The stiffest sentences were handed down to Ante Sapina and Marijo Cvrtak, both of Croatia, who were each sentenced to 5½ years behind bars in May 2011.
Four others were convicted and sentenced to terms ranging from a suspended 18-month sentence to three years in jail.
Sapina and Cvrtak have appealed their convictions.
Six other men are currently on trial in Germany.
The syndicate manipulated domestic league games around the world, including Canada, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Belgium, Turkey, Hungary, Slovenia and Croatia.
No charges have been laid in Canada. Ontario Provincial Police and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police said that no formal complaints have been filed with them.
If you have any information on this story, or any other investigative tips, please email us email@example.com.
Holger Badstuber - Germany
Holger Badstuber of Germany attends a press conference ahead of their UEFA EURO 2012 Quarter-final match against Greece, at the Germany press centre on June 19, 2012 in Gdansk, Poland.
Per Mertesacker - Germany
Germany's defender Per Mertesacker reacts after the friendly International football match Germany vs Israel in the eastern German city of Leipzig on May 31, 2012 just a week ahead of the start of the UEFA Euro 2012 football tournament. Germany won the match 2-0.
Ognjen Vukojevic - Croatia
Croatian midfielder Ognjen Vukojevic celebrates at the end of the Euro 2012 championships football match Republic of Ireland vs Croatia on June 10, 2012 at the Municipal Stadium in Poznan. Croatia won 3 to 1.
Fernando Torres - Spain
Fernando Torres of Spain talks to the media during a UEFA EURO 2012 press conference at the Municipal Stadium on June 17, 2012 in Gdansk, Poland.
Milan Baros - Czech Republic
Milan Baros of Czech Republic appluds the fans after the UEFA EURO 2012 group A match between Czech Republic and Poland at The Municipal Stadium on June 16, 2012 in Wroclaw, Poland.
Simon Kjær - Denmark
Simon Kjær of Denmark applauds the fans after the UEFA EURO 2012 group B match between Denmark and Germany at Arena Lviv on June 17, 2012 in L'viv, Ukraine.
Joleon Lescott - England
English defender Joleon Lescott celebrates after during the Euro 2012 football championships match England vs Ukraine on June 19, 2012 at the Donbass Arena in Donetsk.
Wayne Rooney - England
Wayne Rooney of England looks on during the UEFA EURO 2012 group D match between Sweden and England at The Olympic Stadium on June 15, 2012 in Kiev, Ukraine.
Mathieu Debuchy - France
France's defender Mathieu Debuchy celebrates after scoring a goal during the friendly football match France vs Iceland on May 27, 2012, at the Hainaut Stadium in the French northern city of Valenciennes.
Olivier Giroud - France
French national football team's forward Olivier Giroud arrives for a press conference on May 29, 2012, in Le Touquet-Paris-Plage, northern France, as part of the team preparation for the Euro 2012 championships.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic - Sweden
Swedish forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic gestures at the end of during the Euro 2012 football championships match Sweden vs France on June 19, 2012 at the Olympic Stadium in Kiev.
Anders Svensson - Sweden
Anders Svensson of Sweden during the International Friendly between Croatia and Sweden at the Maksimir Stadium on February 29, 2012 in Zagreb, Croatia.
Giorgios Samaras - Greece
Greece' forward Giorgios Samaras takes part in a press conference at the Municipal stadium of Legionowo on June 19, 2012 during the Euro 2012 football championships.
Alexandros Tziolis - Greece
Alexandros Tziolis of Greece in action during the UEFA Euro 2012 Qualifying round group F match between Greece and Croatia at the Georgios Karaiskakis Stadium on October 7,2011 in Athens, Greece.
Gianluigi Buffon - Italy
Italian goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon is congratulated by Irish midfielder Stephen Ward during the Euro 2012 football championships match Italy vs Republic of Ireland on June 18, 2012 at the Municipal Stadium in Poznan.
Mario Balotelli - Italy
Italian forward Mario Balotelli (R) exchanges his jersey with Irish goalkeeper Shay Given at the end of the Euro 2012 football championships match Italy vs Republic of Ireland on June 18, 2012 at the Municipal Stadium in Poznan. Italy won 0-2. AFP PHOTO / FABRICE COFFRINI (Photo credit should read FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP/GettyImages)
Damien Duff - Ireland
Damien Duff of Republic of Ireland talks to the media during a UEFA EURO 2012 press conference ahead of the UEFA EURO 2012 Group C match between Italy and Republic of Ireland at the Municipal Stadium on June 17, 2012 in Poznan, Poland.
Robbie Keane - Ireland
Robbie Keane of Republic of Ireland looks on during the UEFA EURO 2012 group C between Ireland and Croatia at The Municipal Stadium on June 10, 2012 in Poznan, Poland.
Rafael van der Vaart - Netherlands
Netherland's midfielder Rafael van der Vaart stands for the national anthem prior to the friendly soccer match between the German first division Bundesliga team FC Bayern Munich and the national soccer team of the Netherland's Munich, southern Germany, on May 22, 2012.
Robert Lewandowski - Poland
Polish forward Robert Lewandowski celebrates after scoring a goal during the Euro 2012 championships football match Poland vs Greece on June 8, 2012 at the National Stadium in Warsaw.
Jakub Blaszczykowski - Poland
Jakub Blaszczykowski of Poland applauds the fans after the UEFA EURO 2012 group A match between Czech Republic and Poland at The Municipal Stadium on June 16, 2012 in Wroclaw, Poland.
Cristiano Ronaldo - Portugal
Cristiano Ronaldo of Portugal talks to the media during a press conference after the UEFA EURO 2012 Group B match between Portugal and Netherlands on June 17, 2012 in Kharkov, Ukraine.
Andrey Arshavin - Russia
Andrey Arshavin of Russia in action during the UEFA EURO 2012 group A match between Poland and Russia at The National Stadium on June 12, 2012 in Warsaw, Poland.
Darijo Srna - Croatia
Croatian midfielder Darijo Srna applauds at the end of the Euro 2012 championships football match Italy vs Croatia on June 14, 2012 at the Municipal Stadium in Poznan. The game ended in a draw 1-1.
Yevhen Konoplyanka - Ukraine
Yevhen Konoplyanka of Ukraine in action during the UEFA EURO 2012 group D match between England and Ukraine at Donbass Arena on June 19, 2012 in Donetsk, Ukraine.