‘Mastermind’ assisting probe

Businessman’s associates also called in for questioning by S’pore authorities

Mr Dan Tan Seet Eng, the Singaporean businessman who is reportedly a match-fixing mastermind who rigged games in Europe, is now helping the Singapore authorities with investigations.

“Dan Tan Seet Eng, a Singaporean who has been named in reports so far, is currently assisting the Singapore authorities in their investigations,” the police said yesterday. 

They did not reveal further information such as when the 48-year-old, wanted by the Italian police, started cooperating with the local authorities.

The Straits Times understands that six to nine of Mr Tan’s associates were called in for questioning by the authorities at different times early this week. They were questioned for less than five hours, and all were released without being charged.

One of the men, Admir Sulic, however, was arrested at Milan’s Malpensa Airport on his arrival yesterday. 

Sulic, a Slovenian who is accused of “criminal association aimed at sporting fraud”, had bought a one-way ticket with the intention of surrendering to the authorities.

The Singapore police had a role to play in his arrest, providing information to Interpol, the international criminal police organisation, that he was on a flight from Singapore to Italy. Sulic is suspected of belonging to a betting syndicate headed by Mr Tan called the “zingari” (gypsies).

In 2011, Mr Tan was fingered by Wilson Raj Perumal, 46, a Singaporean convicted and jailed in Finland for match-fixing. Perumal is now under house arrest in Hungary.

Interpol’s general secretary Ronald Noble said yesterday: “I want to compliment the Singapore police not just for their activity yesterday (for providing information on Sulic) but also their activity in fighting international crime, including match-fixing.

“This is exactly the type of result which can be achieved when police share information in real time and use Interpol’s global network to locate, identify and arrest suspects... The arrest of this suspected match-fixer could not have been achieved without Singapore and Italy’s close cooperation with Interpol.” Mr Noble made the remarks at a seminar in Kuala Lumpur to combat match-fixing.

Yesterday, the Singapore police also said that a team of four senior officers from the police and the Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau will be heading to the Interpol headquarters in Lyon, France, within the next two weeks. They will join the Interpol Global Anti-Match-Fixing Taskforce to assist in match-fixing probes. 

The Singapore team, to be led by a deputy assistant commissioner from the Criminal Investigation Department, will work with Interpol to engage member countries affected by match-fixing.

They aim to collect available information and gain access to evidence, witnesses and suspects from these countries. They will also explore avenues to offer assistance and share details with countries affected by match-fixing.

Said Mr Noble, a former chief of the US Secret Service: “Those who doubted Singapore’s ability and commitment to fight match-fixing and bring those wanted for arrest to justice need to understand Singapore acts when the evidence exists and is shared and when their laws permit. Singapore and Italy remain two of

Interpol’s most active and effective member countries.”

Additional reporting by Stanley Ho