Italian clubs will go to trial for match-fixing

Lazio kicks off the celebrations after downing its city rivals Roma in the Coppa Italia final.
Riccardo De Luca/AP

ROME (AP) -- Lazio, Genoa, Lecce and eight players, including Lazio captain Stefan Mauri, will face charges related to match-fixing, the Italian football federation said on Wednesday.

The federation said the charges include rigging games and failing to report match-fixing for two Serie A games - Lazio vs. Genoa and Lecce vs. Lazio in May 2011.

The trial has been fixed for July 24.

Mauri faces a charge of sporting fraud, as do Mario Cassano, Carlo Gervasoni, Omar Milanetto, Alessandro Zamperini, Massimiliano Benassi, Antonio Rosati and Stefano Ferrario.

Mauri and Zamperini have also been cited for violating two articles of the Code of Sports Justice. That is concerned with the principles of loyalty, fairness and integrity, and a ban on betting.

If the charges are proved, the players face bans while the clubs could be deducted points. Reports say prosecutor Stefano Palazzi could ask for a five-year suspension for Mauri, who is facing the most serious charges.

Last week, Serie B club Bari plea-bargained for a one-point penalty for match-fixing.

Bari was also fined 25,000 euros ($32,000) under the deal made with the Italian federation's disciplinary committee for arranging two matches, while several former players also reached plea bargains.

At least 50 people have been arrested in Italy for match-fixing since mid-2011, with matches under investigation by prosecutors in Cremona, Bari and Napoli.

This marks the third consecutive offseason that point penalties have been handed out by the federation. Four Serie A clubs were penalized last season.

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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