On Monday, a Singapore match-fixer was sentenced to four years in prison for conspiring to rig a match during the Southeast Asian Games.
Rajendran R Kurusamy, a supervisor at a construction company, was handed over the stiffest sentence ever imposed for a single match-fixing charge. The 55-year-old is convicted of bribing a foreign coach and players in Singapore in an attempt to fix a Southeast Asian (SEA) Games football match between East Timor and Malaysia.
The Singapore match-fixer pleaded guilty to two charges under the Prevention of Corruption Act, involving payments to Orlando Marques Henriques Mendes, former technical director of the East Timor Football Association, and at least seven players of the East Timor’s national football team.
Mendes was offered 15,000 Singapore dollars by Rajendran to hold a goalless draw score-line for 20 minutes in a first-round match against Malaysia. The match-fixer also offered $4,000 to each complicit players, to ensure defeat.
Nasiruddin, an Indonesian, who helped Kurusamy find contacts in the East Timor football team, was jailed for 30 months in July for his part in the conspiracy. Rajendran was a prime mover in the conspiracy and he played an integral role in arranging meetings to discuss the fix in Singapore, two months before the SEA games.
The Singapore match-fixer has a history of related offences dating back to 1997, attempting to bribe three players in the local S-League. Months later in the same year, he was found guilty in the act and was jailed for nearly two and half years.
In 1999, he received another 24 month jail sentence for agreeing to give 20,000 Singapore dollars to a prison guard to smuggle him a cellphone, which he used to make football bets and other personal calls. IMAGE/asiaone.com