Joachim Persson match-fixing case: key witness Alistair Casey tells his side of the story (Part II)

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Joachim Persson received Samsung's Olympic talent prize in 2006. (photo: Brian Berg / Scanpix Denmark)
Joachim Persson received Samsung's Olympic talent prize in 2006. (photo: Brian Berg / Scanpix Denmark)

Copenhagen: When the news of Joachim Persson being suspended by Badminton World Federation (BWF) hit the media outlet on March 21, 2019, one of the key whistleblower of the case, 38-year-old Scotsman Alistair Casey was not aware that he had been used as a witness in that case.

According to Danish media – TV 2 Sport, Casey then sent an email to BWF’s Secretary General, Thomas Lund, asking about his testimony withdrawal, while also informed Lund that he felt threatened by Andy Hines-Randle, and also thought investigator Paul Scotney had manipulated his testimony. Therefore, the Scotsman demanded that Thomas Lund immediately confirmed that he would fire that two person.

As part of a longer written response TV 2 SPORT has gained insight into, Thomas Lund wrote back to Alistair Casey that he would looked into the matter, in which Casey started by contacting Thomas Lund back in 2016.

Back in 2016, when BWF asked Casey what he knew about Joachim Persson’s involvement in betting, Casey replied on March 11, 2016 with statement below:

“Joachim Persson called me personally and asked me to withdraw from a match in Thailand Masters last month due to betting. He wanted to play thousands on me to win the match, and if I was not able to win, I should withdraw from the match so that the bet would be canceled,” Casey shared internal messages with BWF.

This information triggered BWF to look more closely at Joachim Persson’s possible involvement in match fixing at the end of 2016.

It was also Alistair Casey, who passed screenshots from Messenger conversations and WhatsApp messages between him and Joachim Persson, which BWF used in the case, although there was no concrete evidence that match fixing was involved through those conversations.

According to TV 2 Sport, Alistair Casey is "Witness B" mentioned in the BWF document. (photo: screenshot from BWF's Ethics Hearing Panel Decision)
According to TV 2 Sport, Alistair Casey is “Witness B” mentioned in the BWF document. (photo: screenshot from BWF’s Ethics Hearing Panel Decision)

“BWF’s case against Joachim Persson is over now, and therefore I do not want to provide any details about additional names and information other than my own experience with BWF. It is also not about defending Joachim, but I would like to tell my side of the story,” said Casey.

According to him, there’s a huge betting and match-fixing cultures in badminton tournaments worldwide.

“At a tournament in Thailand, everyone was sitting in the stands and betting. The betting culture was and is still a big problem in the sport,” said Casey.

According to Casey, BWF is only scrapping the surface of the betting and match-fixing culture with some small suspensions and punishments. At the same time, he believed although BWF had spent over two years in the case of Persson, BWF still has not been focusing at the right place and the sport has not been cleaned up.

“Everyone in the badminton world knows it’s pure politics and it’s just a show. BWF wants to show to everyone that they’ve cleaned up the sport and shows everyone what is right and wrong. At the same time, their Integrity Unit was messing the truth and tried to write testimonies that turn the matter into their direction,” added Casey.

“They used my testimony, which I had withdrew. When I cooperated with them, everything was fine, and the two investigators, Paul Scotney and Andy Hines-Randle, even shared confidential information with me from other witnesses, which seemed weird,”

TV 2 SPORT was not able to get more detailed comment on this matter from BWF’s parties who were involved in this issue.

Meanwhile, Joachim Persson has decided not to appeal the 18-month suspension.

“I do not want to spend more resources on this and thus do not sacrifice more time, energy and more money. The case has laid a shadow over my life and it will do so for at least the next 17 months during the suspension,” said Persson to TV 2 Sport.

“At the same time, this matter would limit my future opportunities in the sport of badminton as a simple Google search would always return something negative on my CV,” added Persson.

Original Articles:
a. http://sport.tv2.dk/badminton/2019-04-16-persson-sag-tager-ny-drejning-efter-rystet-hovedvidne-staar-frem
b. http://sport.tv2.dk/badminton/2019-04-16-persson-anker-ikke-lang-karantaene-sagen-har-lagt-en-skygge-over-mit-liv

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