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Crime Cyprus

CFA deputy chairman being questioned by police after match fixing allegations

Football association chief Koumas

The Cyprus Football Association’s deputy chairman Yiorgos Koumas, who was named by referee Marios Panayi as the key figure in alleged corruption in Cypriot football, was called in by Nicosia CID for questioning on Tuesday night.

The referee had spoken of extensive match-fixing in Cyprus, and claimed that the CFA was at the heart of the corruption. His allegations prompted a police investigation that has thus far culminated in the arrest of former CFA official Michalis Spyrou and the chairman of the referees’ association Michalis Argyrou and remains ongoing.

But although Panayi offered his allegations against Koumas publicly almost a full month ago – and also, reportedly, in his statement to the police a few days later – claiming that “unless the umbilical cord between Koumas and the referees is severed, Cypriot football is doomed”, the CFA official had not been brought in for questioning until Tuesday.

Furthermore, although Koumas was not mentioned by name, the Auditor General’s 2013 annual report suggested a probe into possible conflict of interest in the case of “one CFA official who is also linked to companies in the business of acquiring and reselling the television rights to sporting events”.

According to press reports, more CFA officials are expected to be brought in by the police for questioning.

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