The investigation into alleged match-fixing in the North American Counter-Strike scene now involves the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation. This development comes from Ian T. Smith, the integrity commissioner for the Esports Integrity Commission.
In an interview with CS:GO demo reviewer smash32, Smith confirmed the FBI’s involvement and said the bureau only recently began operating a “sports betting unit.” Smith said the unit is “good, but inexperienced.”
He described the match-fixing scandal in North America as “much more serious” than the one in Australia, which saw several players receive lengthy bans in January. This is due to players allegedly “being bribed by outside betting syndicates” rather than the players doing it themselves opportunistically.
Smith said the investigation will deal with two groups: one with the players fixing matches themselves, similar to the Australian players, and one group that’s more seriously involved with the betting syndicates. The first group should be easily dealt with in the next 10 to 14 days because, according to Smith, the ESIC is “dealing with idiots.”
The investigation is specifically targeting North American players who played in the Mountain Dew League, a branch of ESEA. These investigations have been ongoing since September 2020. Coverage of this investigation initially appeared to have stalled, but the FBI’s involvement means other investigators had to withhold findings for the sake of the federal investigation.