In the context of the European Football Championship EURO 2016, the European law enforcement agency Europol, joined forces with the Union of European Football Associations UEFA, and French authorities.
Months ahead of the competition’s kick off, Europol staff were involved in a series of preparatory meetings and exercises held in Paris.
Our agency was part of an Integrity Working Group comprising all relevant key stakeholders established to ensure that UEFA was fully prepared to deal with any eventual match-fixing incidents.
The working group, composed of the French Police and Justice Department, France's online gambling authority ARJEL, UEFA's monitoring partner Sportradar, and the French state lottery, joined forces with UEFA and met regularly during EURO 2016 to guarantee that the correct procedures were followed.
In addition, a Europol team of experts in the field of sports corruption was deployed with a mobile office at the premises of the French Police during the whole tournament. The team attended the regular meetings of the working group in Paris, closely supported the French authorities and facilitated intelligence exchange in this particular crime area.
UEFA announced that no integrity concerns arose at any of the 51 matches at the tournament in France, justifying for the first time the introduction of a comprehensive integrity programme which kicked off two months ahead of the event.
The programme included education, monitoring and cooperation with key stakeholders, with particular emphasis given to preventing any issues related to match-fixing and betting irregularities.
The European bodies UEFA and Europol formally stepped up cooperation against match fixing in May 2014 by signing a Memorandum of Understanding aimed at reinforcing the fight against match-fixing in European football.