Police have detained a man at the game between Crawley Town and Crewe Alexandra on suspicion of being part of an illegal foreign betting operation. A man from Egypt was thrown out of the game after being spotted behaving suspiciously.It is thought that the man was sending information on the game using a code system to a fraudulent overseas betting syndicate.
Sergeant Darren Taylor, a Crawley Town football intelligence officer said, “A security team, representing the Football League, investigating suspected illegal gambling briefed officers ahead of the match. It was intelligence led based on information there could be someone suspicious attending the game. There were people watching the crowd and another covering the CCTV system. Within 15 minutes of kick-off an individual was spotted matching the description of what we were looking for.”
The man was reportedly continually using his phone and was found to have a notebook containing a grid with numbers referring to the next corner or free kick. The man was released after being questioned by police and representatives of the Football League.
Sergeant Taylor went on to say, “These security teams are looking at the much bigger picture. The notebook was confiscated and could contain valuable information…I must stress no one from either club, players, managers or staff, would have known what was going on.”