The Malta FA Board to Adjudicate Charges relating to Bribery and Illegal Betting in Football has imposed a 10-point penalty, a fine of €5,000 and a five-year suspension from international competitions on Pembroke Athleta FC after finding the club guilty of breaching the Association’s Regulations on Bribery and Betting regarding football matches.
In a separate ruling, Uchenna Anyanwu, the former Pembroke Athleta FC Team Manager, was banned for life from all football activities after the same Board found him guilty of violating the Association’s bribery regulations.
Mr Anyanwu is facing criminal charges related to offences of attempted bribery in two 2016-2017 Premier League matches – Pembroke Athleta FC vs Mosta FC, played on the 11th February, 2017, and Mosta FC vs Birkirkara FC, played on the 4th January, 2017.
In the case against Pembroke Athleta FC, the Board noted that “although it did not result that the committee of Pembroke Athleta FC was involved in the alleged attempted bribery, the Rules and Regulations governing the Malta Football Association clearly state that whenever it results that a club official is involved, the club has to carry the responsibility”.
During the period when Anyanwu committed the alleged offences for which he has been banned for life by the MFA, he occupied the role of Pembroke Athleta FC Team Manager.
When these allegations came to light, the Malta Football Association had immediately issued a provisional suspension against Mr Anyanwu, pending the outcome of the disciplinary proceedings against him which have now been concluded.
While taking into consideration the fact that Pembroke Athleta FC have already been relegated to a lower division on sporting merits, the Board concluded: “Under these circumstances, the Board feels that although they (Pembroke Athleta FC) should not be penalised by relegation to a further lower division, the Board decides to impose a fine of five thousand Euro (€5,000), the loss of ten (10 points) during the following football season i.e. 2017-2018 and will be barred from participating in international competitions for five (5) years.”
Both Pembroke Athleta FC and Mr Anyanwu have the right to appeal against the decisions of the Board to Adjudicate Charges relating to Bribery and Illegal Betting in Football.