S. Korean basketball coach to be indicted for fixing games

July 22, 2015
Jeon Chang-jin

Jeon Chang-jin

By Lee Kyung-min

Police said Wednesday that they would send evidence of a match-fixing allegation involving Anyang KGC head coach Jeon Chang-jin to the prosecution shortly.

Jeon had been under investigation since May on suspicion of placing illegal bets on the Internet gambling site Sports Toto on three occasions against his own team, the KT Sonicboom, during the 2014-2015 season. After the season, he moved to his current team.

“We’ll refer the case to the prosecution, asking it to indict him without detention,” a police officer said.

Police initially asked the prosecution to request an arrest warrant for him, but the prosecution rejected it, saying they had already secured enough evidence.

Police suspect that Jeon deliberately made his team lose by benching team members who were playing well instead of those who played poorly.

Officers have secured phone records between Jeon and his accomplices between February and March, as well as testimony from them.

Jeon and two accomplices allegedly bet 300 million won (US$259,000) on a Feb. 20 game, and won 570 million won. But in another match on Feb. 27, they lost all the money as the game result was not what Jeon had tried to engineer.

To make up for the loss, they tried to bet on a March 1 game, but failed to get a big enough stake, police said.

The two accomplices have already been arrested while six others involved were booked without physical detention.

Apart from Jeon, police are considering questioning Seoul SK Knights coach Moon Kyung-eun again over his alleged involvement in the scheme. He was questioned last month.

In phone call records, police found that Jeon and Moon talked over the phone on Feb. 19, a day before the first alleged match-rigging when Jeon’s team was defeated by Moon’s. Jeon contacted Moon through an acquaintance, and then Moon called Jeon twice for a total of 18 minutes.

Police also found that Moon called one of Jeon’s accomplices.

Moon is refusing to come to the police station for questioning, citing overseas training in Los Angeles. In the previous questioning, Moon told police that he didn’t remember the call with Jeon, saying he was too busy to pay attention to other teams’ affairs.

He said he would fully cooperate with the investigation after returning to Korea.