New Zealand parliament agrees to make match-fixing a criminal offence

New Zealand are hoping to bring the bill into effect before the start of the 2015 World Cup

New Zealand are hoping to bring the bill into effect before the start of the 2015 World Cup

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

New Zealand’s parliament has unanimously agreed to make match-fixing a criminal offence after they approved the bill’s first reading on Thursday.

The bill, which is a proposed amendment to the Crimes Act of 1961, aims to impose a punishment of up to seven years’ imprisonment for culprits who are found guilty of match-fixing.

The bill was introduced after former New Zealand batsman Lou Vincent admitted to being involved in match-fixing and was subsequently banned for life.

“This is a short, but very important bill,” New Zealand’s justice minister, Judith Collins, said. “It is designed to protect the integrity of New Zealand sport.

“Match-fixing is a growing problem internationally and has been described as the No 1 threat to the integrity, value and growth of sport.

“As we have seen with recent events, New Zealand is not immune to this growing threat. That’s why the government is taking action on this matter.”

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