Maltese regulator unveils new Sports Integrity Unit

The Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) has established a new Sports Integrity Unit to gather and share intelligence on suspicious betting activity.

The Integrity Unit will be serving as the MGA’ liaison to foreign regulatory authorities, law enforcement agencies, wagering monitoring systems and sports governing bodies combatting the manipulation of sports. The Unit will also work with other divisions of the MGA to implement policy initiatives, such as signing cooperation agreements with other entities focused on tackling corruption in sport.

“Having a dedicated Sports Integrity Unit is vital for the MGA’s statutory objective to ensure that gambling is free from crime, specifically the manipulation of sports competitions. The MGA is committing to cooperation with stakeholders to the extent permitted by law to act against a pervasive phenomenon that threatens the integrity of both the sports and the betting industries,” explained MGA CEO Heathcliff Farrugia.

The Unit will be led by Senior Executive Antonio Zerafa serving as ‘Sports Integrity Officer’, who has formerly led the Authority’s ‘criminal probity screening’ programme, with the MGA’s Enforcement Directorate.

MGA has also released new guidelines for governing licensees’ advertising and established a new committee to ensure compliance with the new rules. The guideline includes a 30-point checklist for licensees that sets out responsible gaming requirements in relation to advertising and promotions. They also apply to social media accounts and third parties acting on behalf of authorised gaming companies.

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