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South Korean volleyball, baseball players indicted


Sixteen volleyball players and two baseball players in South Korea have been indicted for alleged involvement in match-fixing in the latest blow to the country's professional sports leagues.

The volleyball and baseball players allegedly attempted to fix the results of games in return for taking bribes from gambling brokers, a prosecution office in the southeastern city of Daegu said in a statement Wednesday.

Prosecutors indicted 13 other people who allegedly financed or offered the bribes before betting on illegal gambling sites, the statement said.

The volleyball players are suspected of deliberately making mistakes when they received, tossed and spiked balls while the baseball pitchers allegedly intentionally allowed walks in the first innings.

The players, who have already been suspended or received lifetime bans, took up to 5 million South Korean won ($4,450) for each game, according to the prosecution statement. A total of 23 volleyball and baseball games in 2010 and 2011 were fixed, it said.

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Six of the indicated volleyballers are former or current players for the KEPCO45 team, while four others are currently with the military club Sangmu. Two female players from Heungkuk Life Pink Spiders were also among those indicted.

The two baseball players are contracted to the LG Twins based in Seoul.

South Korea is still reeling from a massive match-fixing scandal that engulfed the domestic soccer league last year.

Nearly 80 people have been indicted over the scandal and a former K-League player who was allegedly involved as a gambling broker was found dead in an apparent suicide.

Government officials subsequently threatened to shut down the K-league - Asia's oldest professional soccer league - if any more games are fixed.