Three Elite Junior Ice Hockey Players Sentenced for Match Fixing

(Stock photo by TASR/AP)

Banska Bystrica, November 25 (TASR) – Three junior ice hockey premier league players on Friday received parole sentences for match fixing from the Specialised Criminal Court in Banska Bystrica.

The three young players, who were among the leaders of elite team HC Kosice, allegedly last year attempted to manipulate the result of a match with Mladez Michalovce.

One of the players, Jakub V., allegedly approached all three Kosice goaltenders (at the time it wasn’t clear who’d be playing) to let Kosice lose the game against Michalovce for a financial reward. Other two players, Peter K. and Liridon G., later directly approached the goalie who had been selected to play, offering him a bribe.

During the first period of the game itself, the Kosice coach noticed that the three aforementioned players were far behind their normal performance, and everything came to light during the first intermission. Kosice eventually won the game, but the club filed a criminal complaint.

The three players denied any involvement in match fixing before the court. Nevertheless, the goaltender testified against them, with a certain betting company also providing evidence on unusual bets on the outsider’s win.

Jakub V. received a two-year parole sentence, and Peter K. and Liridon G. got six-month suspended sentences each.

When asked by TASR whether he’d perhaps go off hockey after the trial, Liridon G. said: “I don’t want to stand on ice any more, I’m fed up for five lives.”

The other two players fled before journalists.