NEWS & PRESS

December 04, 2023

Public Statement on Disciplinary Action Against Participant Alexey Shyshko

 Introduction to ESIC Public Statement on Lifetime Ban of Alexey Shyshko: 

The Esports Integrity Commission (ESIC) today announces a critical action in our ongoing efforts to safeguard the integrity of esports. Following a comprehensive investigation, ESIC has imposed a lifetime ban on Mr. Alexey Shyshko, proprietor of numerous professional esports teams, including Akuma, Majesty and Project X, for severe violations of the ESIC Code of Conduct and Anti-Corruption Code over a considerable period of time. This ban, effective from October 24, 2023, is in response to Mr. Shyshko’s involvement in orchestrating match-fixing activities and facilitating cheating within various esports competitions. 

As proprietor, Mr. Shyshko misused his influential position to undermine the principles of fair competition and integrity that form the cornerstone of esports. This included manipulating match outcomes for financial gain and providing unfair advantages to his teams in competitive play, encouraging and facilitating various players to cheat and match-fix for his financial gain. Such actions not only compromised the integrity of individual matches but also tarnished the reputation of esports as a whole. 

This decision, a first of its kind in terms of its severity, underscores ESIC’s commitment to enforcing strict adherence to its codes and ensuring a level playing field for all participants. The lifetime ban of Mr. Shyshko, accompanied by additional sanctions on associated teams and individuals, serves as a stark reminder that any form of corruption or unethical behavior within the esports arena will be met with the most serious consequences. 

ESIC’s primary mission remains the preservation of the integrity and fair competition in esports. This case, while regrettable, highlights our unwavering dedication to this mission and our readiness to take decisive action to protect the sport’s integrity and the interests of all fair competitors and fans globally. 

Overview of the Case 

ESIC’s inquiry was propelled by information received through confidential sources, betting evidence provided by our Anti-Corruption Supporters and match analysis provided by experts seconded to us by ESIC member tournament organisers, necessitating a detailed and meticulous examination of the activities surrounding Mr. Shyshko, his multiple teams and large roster of associated players. 

Our investigation unveiled substantial evidence that Mr. Shyshko engaged in activities that flagrantly and consistently violated the principles of fair play and integrity central to the ethos of esports. These activities primarily involved instances of match-fixing and facilitating cheating, which are antithetical to the competitive spirit of esports. 

In one egregious incident, Mr. Shyshko was implicated in facilitating a match-fixing agreement during a Bulgarian LAN event, involving Team Majesty, which he owned and controlled. This plan, executed between August 20, 2020, and December 2, 2020, involved the deliberate manipulation of match outcomes with the promise of financial gain for the participating players. In another disturbing instance, during the “Time of Bet Cup” event, Mr. Shyshko provided Team Majesty with an unfair advantage by enabling unauthorized communication methods, significantly compromising the integrity of the competition. 

The findings made by ESIC during its investigations into Mr. Shyshko’s behaviours paint a clear picture of Mr. Shyshko’s involvement in corrupt practices that directly contravened the ESIC Code of Conduct and Anti-Corruption Code, reflecting a calculated disregard for the fundamental principles of esports integrity. 

The severity of Mr. Alexey Shyshko’s actions cannot be understated. His involvement in orchestrating match-fixing and facilitating cheating not only breached the trust of players, teams, and fans but also threatened the very foundation of fair competition in esports. These actions, uncovered during our thorough investigation, clearly violated specific sections of the ESIC Code. 

The investigation revealed that Mr. Shyshko’s conduct breached Section 2.1 of the ESIC Code of Conduct, which mandates that esports participants must not engage in any form of cheating, match-fixing, or any other activities that undermine the integrity of esports. Additionally, his actions contravened Section 3.1 of the Anti-Corruption Code, which prohibits participants from engaging in betting, gambling, or similar activities that could lead to conflicts of interest. Furthermore, the violations also fell under the purview of Section 6.1 of the ESIC Disciplinary Procedure, which stipulates that participants found guilty of engaging in cheating or match-fixing are subject to a range of sanctions, including fines, suspensions, or disqualification from competition. 

This background forms the basis of the sanctions imposed on Mr. Shyshko, reflecting ESIC’s unwavering commitment to uphold the highest standards of integrity within the esports industry. 

ESIC’s Actions and Sanctions: 

In response to the grave violations committed by Mr. Alexey Shyshko, the Esports Integrity Commission (ESIC) has taken decisive and stringent actions to uphold the integrity of esports and enforce its Integrity Program. The following summarizes the key actions and sanctions imposed: 

Issuance of a Rejection Order Against Alexey Shyshko: 

ESIC has issued a Rejection Order against Mr. Shyshko, effective from October 24, 2023, culminating in a lifetime ban from all ESIC member events. This unprecedented sanction reflects the seriousness of Mr. Shyshko’s offenses and serves as a strong deterrent to others who might contemplate similar violations. 

The Rejection Order encompasses a comprehensive participation restriction, prohibiting Mr. Shyshko from participating in any capacity—whether as owner, agent, or manager—in any ESIC member events. Additionally, any team or player in which Mr. Shyshko has an interest or involvement is also barred from participating in ESIC member events. 

Mr. Shyshko was served with the Rejection Order and given an opportunity to respond. It is noted that Mr.Shysko did not contest ESIC’s charge and expressed an acceptance of the charges and the sanction applied by ESIC. 

Sanctions on Teams and Individuals Associated with Shyshko: 

Earlier this week, ESIC handed down additional sanctions for participants associated with the teams implicated in Mr. Shyshko’s behaviour. This action reinforces the principle that entities linked to corrupt practices will face serious repercussions. Further investigations and potential prosecutions remain in progress. 

Protection and Immunity for Cooperating Individuals: 

In recognition of the valuable assistance provided by several individuals during the investigation, ESIC has granted immunity to those who cooperated in bringing this outcome to pass. This decision underscores ESIC’s commitment to encouraging reporting of unethical behavior while ensuring the safety and anonymity of informants. 

Through these actions, ESIC affirms its steadfast dedication to maintaining the integrity of esports. These sanctions are a clear message that violations of the ESIC Code of Conduct and Anti-Corruption Code will be met with the utmost seriousness and result in significant consequences. This stance is vital in preserving the spirit of fair competition and the trust of players, teams, and fans in the esports ecosystem. 

Conclusion and ESIC’s Comments 

In conclusion, the Esports Integrity Commission (ESIC) reaffirms its unwavering commitment to upholding the highest standards of integrity within the esports industry. The rigorous investigation and subsequent sanctions imposed on Mr. Alexey Shyshko and associated individuals reflect our resolve to confront unethical behavior head-on and protect the essence of fair competition. 

ESIC remains vigilant and proactive in identifying and addressing threats to the integrity of esports. We continue to refine our monitoring and investigative processes, working collaboratively with teams, players, and event organizers to foster an environment where fair play is paramount. 

We encourage all stakeholders within the esports industry – players, teams, organizers, and fans – to join us in this important endeavor. By working together, we can create a landscape that not only values competitive excellence but also champions ethical conduct and respect for the rules. 

ESIC is committed to maintaining transparent and open lines of communication with all members of the esports community. We welcome feedback, collaboration, and information that can aid in our mission to maintain a clean and reputable competitive environment. 

About ESIC 

ESIC is the recognized guardian of the integrity of esports and works to for disrupt, prevent, investigate, and prosecute of all forms of cheating and malpractice in esports, including, but not limited to, match manipulation and doping with the overarching objective of protecting youth, promoting industry investment and safeguarding sporting integrity in esports. 

Learn more about ESIC at https://www.esic.gg 

NEWS & PRESS

November 30, 2023

Public Statement on Outcome of Provisional Sanction against Participant Joel “Joel” Holmlund

Overview

In September, the Esports Integrity Commission (ESIC) provisionally suspended Mr. Joel Hulmlund for serious breaches of the ESIC Anti-Corruption Code (see our Statement here: Public Statement on Disciplinary Action Against Participant Joel “Joel” Holmlund – ESIC).

Notably, the provisional suspension of Mr. Holmlund, was related to his behavior while being a professional player for the team Godsent. Namely, that he had engaged in corrupt behavior contravening the ESIC Anti-Corruption Code during his participation in the BetBoom Playlist Urbanistic event, and separately in the IEM Dallas 2023 (Europe Closed Qualifier) involving Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO), in the following manner:

  1. Between the period of 27 March 2023 to 28 March 2023, Mr. Holmlund placed bets on matches he was playing in;
  2. On 31 March 2023, Mr. Holmlund placed two bets against his own team in one match; and
  3. Between the period of 29 March 2023 to 1 May 2023, Mr. Holmlund proceeded to place 17 bets on various CS:GO matches.

As part of ESIC’s process in this matter, Mr. Holmlund was given an opportunity to provide further evidence on or before 6 October 2023, and to further cooperate with ESIC’s investigation. While Mr. Holmlund was unable to provide any evidence to the contrary of ESIC’s charges, Mr. Holmlund made significant efforts to cooperate with ESIC’s investigation.

Importantly, as a result of ESIC’s investigation, and with significant consideration of Mr. Holmlund’s cooperation, assistance, genuine contrition and commitment to seeking professional help, ESIC has concluded this investigation by issuing Mr. Holmlund with a Rejection Order spanning the period of 30 August 2023 to 6 January 2024.

This In the interest of transparency and public confidence, we are issuing this statement to inform the public about the considerations taken into account in arriving at the outcome of this matter and to provide examples of the matters and actions ESIC may consider in any future interaction with a participant under investigation or convicted of an offence under the ESIC Codes.

Assistance with Investigations:

ESIC is committed to upholding the highest standards of integrity and fair play in the esports industry. As part of our commitment, ESIC sometimes offer individuals under investigation, or those already convicted, the opportunity to assist in our broader investigations. This can lead to a reduction in their sanctions or, in certain cases, exemption from prosecution. In the recent investigation involving Mr. Holmlund, he provided ESIC with crucial information pertinent to various ongoing inquiries. His full and candid cooperation was helpful to ESIC’s ongoing investigations. Consequently, we have decided that a reduction in Mr. Holmlund’s suspension is warranted and aligns with the principles of fairness and justice.

ESIC encourages individuals facing investigation or sanction within the esports industry to come forward and collaborate with ESIC. By providing valuable information and aiding in our investigations, they not only contribute to the integrity and transparency of the esports industry but also stand to benefit from potential reductions in their penalties. This approach underscores our commitment to fairness and the importance of cooperative efforts in maintaining the highest ethical standards in esports. We believe that this approach not only aids in effective enforcement but also fosters a culture of responsibility and honesty among participants.

Recognition of Gambling Problems and Consequences

It became apparent early in our interactions with Mr. Holmlund that he fit the gambling industry’s definition of a problem gambler – someone who lacks control over their gambling habits and exhibits signs of addiction. Throughout his initial discussions with ESIC, where Mr. Holmlund was supported by skilled legal counsel, he acknowledged his gambling issues and agreed to pursue professional counseling and treatment. ESIC considers this behavioral issue as a significant factor contributing to Mr. Holmlund’s involvement in betting on CSGO, which was in violation of the ESIC Codes. However, Mr. Holmlund’s commitment to seek help was considered favorably when concluding on the duration of the Rejection Order issued.

Apology and Commitments to the Community

Mr. Holmlund has not only expressed his willingness to apologise to the CS and wider esports community for his actions (as detailed in his statement below and on social media), but he has also agreed to collaborate with ESIC in our participant education program. He will contribute by creating video content that highlights the risks associated with betting on one’s professional game and more broadly addresses the negative aspects of gambling, especially for those who struggle with responsible gambling. ESIC is confident that Mr. Holmlund’s involvement in this initiative will greatly benefit the esports community by enhancing understanding and management of the relationship between esports and betting on these events.

Suggestions of Match-Fixing

It has been alleged that, in addition to the betting offences committed by Mr. Holmlund, he also deliberately underperformed in order to win bets where he had bet against his own team. Upon further investigation and assessment, and in the interest of justice, ESIC wishes to clarify that there is no compelling or conclusive evidence that this is true.

Practical Outcomes

The conclusion of this investigation and the corresponding Rejection Order duration will mean that Mr. Holmlund will have served an effective 7 month ban from ESIC member events, which we believe is proportionate to his original offences when looked at together with the assistance and commitments detailed above. Accordingly, he is free to play in any ESIC member event from 6th January 2024 onwards.

Statement from Mr. Holmlund

Dear Members of the Esports Community,

 I am writing this statement to openly and sincerely apologize for my actions that have affected the CSGO and broader esports community. It is with a heavy heart that I acknowledge my involvement in betting on professional CSGO matches, a clear violation of the ESIC Codes and the trust you placed in me as a member of this community.

 Reflecting on my actions, I realize the gravity of my mistake and the negative impact it has had on the integrity of the sport we all love and cherish. My behavior was not only irresponsible but also undermined the principles of fair play and sportsmanship that are the foundation of competitive gaming.

 I understand that being a professional in the esports industry carries with it a responsibility to uphold the highest standards of conduct. My actions fell short of these standards, and for that, I am truly sorry. I have let down my fans, teammates, and the entire esports community, and for this, I take full responsibility.

 As part of my commitment to rectify my actions, I have agreed to participate in ESIC’s participant education program. Through this, I aim to share my experiences and the lessons I’ve learned, highlighting the dangers of betting on professional games and the broader risks associated with irresponsible gambling. I hope that by sharing my story, I can prevent others from making similar mistakes and contribute positively to the community I care deeply about.

 I am currently seeking professional counseling and treatment for my gambling issues. This journey towards recovery is not just about complying with the sanctions but is a personal commitment to better myself and rebuild the trust I have lost.

 I am grateful for the opportunity to learn from my mistakes and to contribute to the betterment of the esports community. Thank you for your understanding and support during this time.

 Sincerely,

Joel

 ESIC’s Commitment to Integrity

ESIC remains steadfast in our commitment to maintaining the highest standards of integrity in esports. We will continue to conduct investigations and impose sanctions when necessary to protect the integrity of the industry. We also encourage the esports community to actively participate in promoting fair play and integrity in esports. We would strongly encourage participants with knowledge of corrupt acts to come forward and talk to us. We are already discretely working with several players in addition to Joel to either indemnify them from prosecution in return for valuable information or to reduce sanctions in return for information leading to prosecution of bad actors in esports. If you know something, please consider coming forward voluntarily or face harsher sanctions when you are eventually caught.

About ESIC

ESIC is the recognized guardian of the integrity of esports and works to for disrupt, prevent, investigate, and prosecute of all forms of cheating and malpractice in esports, including, but not limited to, match manipulation and doping with the overarching objective of protecting youth, promoting industry investment and safeguarding sporting integrity in esports.

Learn more about ESIC at https://www.esic.gg

NEWS & PRESS

November 29, 2023

Public Statement on Disciplinary Action Against Participants Dmytro “SENSEi” Shvorak, Maksym “THRONE” Semenov, Artur “DarkS1DE” Kravchenko, and Danylo “nat1ve” Bakin

Introduction

The Esports Integrity Commission (ESIC) has taken decisive action to suspend Mr. Dmytro “SENSEi” Shvorak, Mr. Maksym “THRONE” Semenov, Mr. Artur “DarkS1DE” Kravchenko, and Mr. Danylo “nat1ve” Bakin, professional esports players, from all ESIC Member events for two years following investigations into teams Akuma, Project X and Majesty corroborating allegations of multiple breaches of the ESIC Anti-Corruption Code and significant evidence of suspicious and unusual betting on matches involving these players.

Overview of the Case

The investigations into these individuals were prompted by betting evidence and confidential information confirming their involvement in match-fixing activities. These activities, contravening the ESIC Code of Conduct and Anti-Corruption Code, include:

  1. Dmytro “SENSEi” Shvorak’s attempted engagement in match-fixing activities during several LAN events with Team Project X.
  2. Maksym “THRONE” Semenov’s participation in match-fixing activities during a Bulgarian LAN event with Team Majesty between August and December 2020.
  3. Artur “DarkS1DE” Kravchenko’s involvement in similar activities during a Bulgarian LAN event with Team Majesty.
  4. Danylo “nat1ve” Bakin’s participation in match-fixing activities during the same Bulgarian LAN event with Team Majesty.

Collectively referred to as “Sanctioned Participants”.

Investigation and Charges

ESIC’s comprehensive investigation included examination of betting evidence from our Anti-Corruption Supporters, match analysis, witness corroboration and betting pattern analysis. Based on the findings, each individual was charged with breaches of the ESIC’s Anti-Corruption Code, particularly in relation to corruption and betting activities.

After collating and reviewing the evidence in light of the allegations, the Sanctioned Participants were charged with a breach of ESIC’s Anti-Corruption Code, particularly:

2.1 Corruption:

2.1.1 Fixing or contriving in any way or otherwise influencing improperly, or being a party to any effort to fix or contrive in any way or otherwise influence improperly, the result, progress, conduct, or any other aspect of any Match.

 Section 3.1 (Anti-Corruption Code)

 No participant shall engage in any form of betting, gambling, or similar activity that has the potential to create a conflict of interest.

 And further offences under the ESIC Code of Conduct articles as follows;

2.4.5 Where the facts of the alleged incident are not adequately or clearly covered by any of the above offences, conduct that brings Esport, the Game, Event, ESIC or a Member into disrepute.

The Sanctioned Participants were each served with a Notice of Charge on 24 October 2023 and given an opportunity to respond. The Sanctioned Participants did not respond to the Notice of Charge.

Sanction Duration

In accordance with the ESIC Anti-Corruption Code, ESIC hereby issues a Rejection Order against each individual, effective from 24 October 2023 to 24 October 2025. During this period, they are prohibited from participating in any ESIC member events and must comply with all relevant provisions of the ESIC Anti-Corruption Code.

About ESIC

ESIC is the recognized guardian of the integrity of esports and works to for disrupt, prevent, investigate, and prosecute of all forms of cheating and malpractice in esports, including, but not limited to, match manipulation and doping with the overarching objective of protecting youth, promoting industry investment and safeguarding sporting integrity in esports.

Learn more about ESIC at https://www.esic.gg

 

 

NEWS & PRESS

November 09, 2023

Public Statement on Disciplinary Action Against Participant Swabry “MAJOR” Iddi

Introduction

The Esports Integrity Commission (ESIC) has concluded its thorough investigation and is taking decisive action against the professional esports player known as Mr. Iddi for breaches of the ESIC Anti-Corruption Code during a FIFA match against LEFTY on 8 May 2023.

After a comprehensive investigation, Mr. Iddi was served with a Formal Notice of Charge for violations of the ESIC Anti-Corruption Code, specifically related to corrupt activities during his participation in an ESIC member’s FIFA match. The allegations are serious and include engaging in behavior that contravenes the ESIC Anti-Corruption Code.

Overview of the Case

Mr. Iddi is alleged to have engaged in activities that contravene the ESIC Anti-Corruption Code, which include, but are not limited to:

  • Fixing or influencing improperly the result, progress, conduct, or any other aspect of a match.
  • Ensuring for Betting or other corrupt purposes the occurrence of a particular incident in a match.

Investigation and Charges

The investigation process included an examination of betting records, account registrations, digital footprints, and betting patterns. ESIC extends its gratitude to its Anti-Corruption Supporter member betting operators for providing crucial evidence that contributed significantly to establishing the charges against Mr. Iddi.

Mr. Iddi is charged with breaching the following articles of the ESIC Anti-Corruption Code:

2 .1 Corruption:

2.1.1 Fixing or contriving in any way or otherwise influencing improperly, or being a party to any agreement or effort to fix or contrive in any way or otherwise influence improperly, the result, progress, conduct or any other aspect of any Match, including (without limitation) by deliberately underperforming therein.

 2.1.2 Ensuring for Betting or other corrupt purposes the occurrence of a particular incident in a Match or Event.

 2.1.3 Seeking, accepting, offering or agreeing to accept any bribe or other Reward to: (a) fix or to contrive in any way or otherwise to influence improperly the result, progress, conduct or any other aspect of any Match; or (b) ensure for Betting or other corrupt purposes the occurrence of a particular incident in a Match.

Further offences under the ESIC Code of Conduct articles as follows;

 2.4.5 Where the facts of the alleged incident are not adequately or clearly covered by any of the above offences, conduct that brings Esport, the Game, Event, ESIC or a Member into disrepute.

Given the evidence presented and the opportunity for a plea bargain that would result in a reduced sanction, MR. IDDI has not yet engaged with the ESIC disciplinary process. Consequently, in adherence to ESIC’s regulatory framework and considering the severity of the charges, the Commission has no alternative but to proceed with the imposition of the sanctions as outlined in the Anti-Corruption Code.

Sanction Duration

The imposed sanction will be a ban of two years from the date of the initial Notice of Charge, ending at midnight on 14 June 2025. During this time, MR. IDDI is prohibited from participating in any capacity within ESIC member events.

About ESIC

ESIC is the recognized guardian of the integrity of esports and works to for disrupt, prevent, investigate, and prosecute of all forms of cheating and malpractice in esports, including, but not limited to, match manipulation and doping with the overarching objective of protecting youth, promoting industry investment and safeguarding sporting integrity in esports.

Learn more about ESIC at https://www.esic.gg

 <END>

 For further information regarding this release, contact:

press@esic.gg

Twitter: ESIC_Official

Web: www.esic.gg

NEWS & PRESS

November 09, 2023

Public Statement on Disciplinary Action Against Participant Burak “Monkeylay” Can Turunc

Introduction

The Esports Integrity Commission (ESIC) has concluded its investigation and is taking decisive action against Mr. Burak “Monkeylay” Can Turunc, a professional esports player formerly of the team “NoChance”, for multiple breaches of the ESIC Anti-Corruption Code.

After thorough investigations, Mr. Turunc was served with a Formal Notice of Charge for violations of the ESIC Anti-Corruption Code during the Intel ESL Turkiye CS:GO Sampiyonasi – Sezon XII – Playoffs. The allegations pertain to corrupt practices, including betting against his own team, “NoChance,” and breaching the ESIC Code of Conduct.

Overview of the Case

Mr. Turunc is alleged to have engaged in activities that contravene the ESIC Anti-Corruption Code during the Intel ESL Turkiye CS:GO Sampiyonasi – Sezon XII – Playoffs, specifically:

  • Betting against his own team during the competition,
  • Engaging in practices that influence the outcome of matches for betting purposes.

Investigation and Charges

The investigation included examining betting records, account registrations, digital footprints, and betting patterns. The ESIC thanks its Anti-Corruption Supporter member betting operators for providing evidence that was crucial in establishing the charges against Mr. Turunc.

Mr. Turunc is charged with a breach of the following articles of the ESIC Anti-Corruption Code:

2 .1 Corruption:

2.1.1 Fixing or contriving in any way or otherwise influencing improperly, or being a party to any agreement or effort to fix or contrive in any way or otherwise influence improperly, the result, progress, conduct or any other aspect of any Match, including (without limitation) by deliberately underperforming therein.

 2.1.2 Ensuring for Betting or other corrupt purposes the occurrence of a particular incident in a Match or Event.

 2.1.3 Seeking, accepting, offering or agreeing to accept any bribe or other Reward to: (a) fix or to contrive in any way or otherwise to influence improperly the result, progress, conduct or any other aspect of any Match; or (b) ensure for Betting or other corrupt purposes the occurrence of a particular incident in a Match.

2.2 Betting:

2.2.1 Betting on any CS:GO Match, especially those in which you participate as a player.

2.2.2 Facilitating, aiding, abetting, or otherwise assisting any party in committing acts described in 2.2.1.

2.3.1 Failing to disclose to the ESIC a full and true disclosure of all the facts and circumstances with respect to acts described in 2.1 and 2.2.

Further offences under the ESIC Code of Conduct articles as follows;

 2.4.5 Where the facts of the alleged incident are not adequately or clearly covered by any of the above offences, conduct that brings Esport, the Game, Event, ESIC or a Member into disrepute.

Despite the presentation of substantial evidence and the provision of a plea bargain that would result in a minimum two-year exclusion from all ESIC member events, Mr. Turunc has not engaged with ESIC’s disciplinary process. He has neither responded to the Notice of Charge nor the offered plea bargain.

Sanction Duration

Consequently, in adherence to ESIC’s regulatory framework and the gravity of the charges, the Commission is left with no alternative but to proceed with the imposition of the sanctions as per the Anti-Corruption Code. The imposed sanction will be a ban of two years from the date of the initial Notice of Charge, extending until midnight on 6th September 2025. During this period, Mr. Turunc is barred from participating in any capacity within ESIC member events.

About ESIC

ESIC is the recognized guardian of the integrity of esports and works to for disrupt, prevent, investigate, and prosecute of all forms of cheating and malpractice in esports, including, but not limited to, match manipulation and doping with the overarching objective of protecting youth, promoting industry investment and safeguarding sporting integrity in esports.

Learn more about ESIC at https://www.esic.gg

<END>

 For further information regarding this release, contact:

press@esic.gg

Twitter: ESIC_Official

Web: www.esic.gg

NEWS & PRESS

September 25, 2023

Public Statement on Disciplinary Action Against Participant Flynn “Deluxe” Smith

Introduction

The Esports Integrity Commission (ESIC) is dedicated to maintaining the highest standards of integrity and fair play within the esports industry. In the interest of transparency and public confidence, we are issuing this statement to inform the public about a recent disciplinary action taken against a participant in an esports event.

Overview of the Case

During the a match played on 24th February, esports participant Flynn “Deluxe” Smith was alleged to have engaged in corrupt behavior, which contravened the ESIC Anti-Corruption Code. As part of our commitment to ensuring integrity in esports, ESIC initiated an investigation into the matter. Due to intervening factors, ESIC could not make a public statement on the matter until this point in time.

Investigation and Charges

Our comprehensive investigation into the matter involved examining match footage, reviewing betting patterns, and conducting interviews with relevant parties. While we must maintain confidentiality to protect the integrity of the investigation, we can share that the evidence collected pointed to Mr. Smith’s involvement in activities that contravened articles 2.1.1 and 2.1.2 of the ESIC Anti-Corruption Code. These activities include improper influence on match outcomes and involvement in corrupt betting practices. The gathered information was subsequently presented to Mr. Smith in a Notice of Charge.

Resolution and Sanction

After reviewing the charges and evidence, Flynn “Deluxe” Smith accepted the charges and agreed to a plea bargain arrangement. Consequently, he is subject to a two-year ban from participating in any capacity in events organized by ESIC Members. The ban is effective from 4th April 2023 until midnight 3rd April 2025.

ESIC’s Commitment to Integrity

ESIC remains steadfast in our commitment to maintaining the highest standards of integrity in esports. We will continue to conduct investigations and impose sanctions when necessary to protect the integrity of the industry. We also encourage the esports community to actively participate in promoting fair play and integrity in esports.

Conclusion

We appreciate the esports industry’s support in maintaining the integrity of the industry and fostering a fair, competitive environment for all participants. If you have any inquiries or concerns related to this statement, please feel free to contact us at press@esic.gg.

About ESIC

ESIC is the recognized guardian of the integrity of esports and works to for disrupt, prevent, investigate, and prosecute of all forms of cheating and malpractice in esports, including, but not limited to, match manipulation and doping with the overarching objective of protecting youth, promoting industry investment and safeguarding sporting integrity in esports.

Learn more about ESIC at https://www.esic.gg

 

NEWS & PRESS

September 20, 2023

Public Statement on Disciplinary Action Against Participant Joel “Joel” Holmlund

Introduction

The Esports Integrity Commission (ESIC) has taken decisive action to provisionally suspend Mr. Joel “Joel” Holmlund, a professional esports player, formerly of team Godsent, from all ESIC Member events in light of evidence available corroborating allegations of his multiple breaches of the ESIC Anti-Corruption Code.

Overview of the Case

It is alleged that Mr. Joel Holmlund, while being a professional player for the team Godsent, engaged in corrupt behavior contravening the ESIC Anti-Corruption Code during his participation in the BetBoom Playlist Urbanistic event, and separately in the IEM Dallas 2023 (Europe Closed Qualifier) involving Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO), for the following infringements:

  1. Between the period of 27 March 2023 to 28 March 2023, Mr. Holmlund placed bets on matches he was playing in;
  2. On 31 March 2023, Mr. Holmlund placed two bets against his own team in one match; and
  3. Between the period of 29 March 2023 to 1 May 2023, Mr. Holmlund proceeded to place 17 bets on various CS:GO matches.

Although the tournament related to item 1 was not an ESIC member event tournament, the ESIC Codes allow ESIC to issue a Rejection Order pursuant to item 2.A.2 of the Anti-Corruption Code. The tournament related to item 2 was an ESIC member event, and the ESIC Codes give ESIC jurisdiction. This sanction will be issued to all ESIC members and may be adopted by other third parties at their discretion.

Investigation and Charges

Our comprehensive investigation into the matter involved examining:

  1. Records of individual bets placed during specific events.
  2. Multiple account registrations and their associated details.
  3. Digital footprints, including IP addresses, device IDs, and browser information.
  4. Linkages between the betting accounts and various social media platforms.
  5. Betting patterns in relation to specific esports matches and in-game performance.
  6. Records of bets placed on various esports matches.
  7. Patterns of betting behavior in relation to professional participation.

ESIC is grateful for the cooperation of our Anti-Corruption Supporter member betting operators for providing this evidence.

After collating and reviewing the evidence in light of the allegations, Mr. Holmlund was charged with a breach of ESIC’s Anti-Corruption Code, particularly:

2.1 Corruption:

2.1.1 Fixing or contriving in any way or otherwise influencing improperly, or being a party to any effort to fix or contrive in any way or otherwise influence improperly, the result, progress, conduct, or any other aspect of any Match.

 2.2 Betting:

2.2.1 Betting on any CS:GO Match, including matches that you were a professional participant in  as detailed in the infringements above.

2.2.2 Facilitating, aiding, abetting or otherwise assisting any party in committing acts described in 2.2.1.

2.2.3 Failing to disclose to the ESIC a full and true disclosure of all the facts and circumstances with respect to acts described in 2.1 and 2.2.

And further offences under the ESIC Code of Conduct articles as follows;

2.4.5 Where the facts of the alleged incident are not adequately or clearly covered by any of the above offences, conduct that brings Esport, the Game, Event, ESIC or a Member into disrepute.

Mr. Holmlund was served with a Notice of Charge on 30 August 2023 and given an opportunity to respond. After denying the charges in reply, ESIC gathered additional evidence to assess the veracity of his denials.

Considering the gravity of the allegations, Mr. Holmlund’s current active participation in an ESIC-affiliated event, and being satisfied with the compelling evidence presented in its further investigation, ESIC has elected to suspend Mr. Holmlund via a Rejection Order Notice. While the suspension stands, ESIC remains open to reevaluation should Mr. Holmlund present new evidence by 6 October 2023.

Sanction Duration

At the time of publication, as the Rejection Order Notice has not been finalised, ESIC will reserve the disclosure of the duration of the ban on participation in ESIC member events to be imposed. ESIC will make a further statement on or after 6 October 2023 to confirm the final outcome of the investigation.

The ESIC Open Matters Register, found on the ESIC website, will facilitate any further public updates about this matter as published by ESIC from time to time, and at its discretion.

About ESIC

ESIC is the recognized guardian of the integrity of esports and works to for disrupt, prevent, investigate, and prosecute of all forms of cheating and malpractice in esports, including, but not limited to, match manipulation and doping with the overarching objective of protecting youth, promoting industry investment and safeguarding sporting integrity in esports.

Learn more about ESIC at https://www.esic.gg

NEWS & PRESS

May 06, 2022

ESIC ISSUES CHARGES AGAINST THREE COACHES RESULTING FROM THE HISTORICAL SPECTATOR BUG INVESTIGATION

OVERVIEW

On 5th May 2022 ESIC issued a statement ( ESIC TO ISSUE CHARGES RESULTING FROM HISTORICAL SPECTATOR BUG INVESTIGATION – ESIC) setting out information on the Static Spectator Bug, Third-Person Spectator Bug, and Free-Roam Spectator Bug (collectively referred to as “Spectator Bug Variants”) encountered in CS:GO competition over a significant number of years and explaining how each would be dealt with in sanctioning participants who had been bugged by each of the variants. 37 coaches were sanctioned in 2020 for offences relating to the static spectator bug variant.

This statement deals with charges against three participants ahead of further statements to be made by ESIC with respect to the Spectator Bug Variants in finalising this matter.

 

CLARIFICATION ON REASONING BEHIND SANCTIONS RELATING TO THE SPECTATOR BUG VARIANTS

In order to be abundantly clear, it is important to note that ESIC does not view the outcome of an unfair advantage being achieved as a necessary factor of the threat created by the Spectator Bug Variants. Rather, the mere potential for exploitation and its utilisation by the affected participants created an opportunity for an unfair advantage that should have been immediately rectified.

The Commissioner is of the view that all Spectator Bug Variant related occurrences regardless of apparent harm (or harmlessness) should, in a professional setting, be dealt with swiftly and immediately. The Commissioner takes the firm view that esports should hold no room for complacency with such matters and accordingly seeks to apply a penalty to those who did not adequately deal with the opportunity to gain a competitive advantage during an occurrence any of the Spectator Bug Variants.

The above reasoning is consistent with all statements made by ESIC relating to the Spectator Bug Variants.

 

ESIC ISSUES NOTICES OF CHARGE TO THREE ESPORTS PARTICIPANTS AS A RESULT OF THE HISTORICAL SPECTATOR BUG INVESTIGATION 

ESIC has issued three individuals with a Notice of Charge relating to various occurrences of the Spectator Bug Variants. These individuals are:

  • Luis “peacemaker” Tadeu [Free Roam Spectator Bug]
  • Sergey ‘hally’ Shavayev [Static Spectator Bug]
  • Rafael ‘zakk’ Fernandes [Static Spectator Bug]

ESIC’s Notices of Charge detail the offence, evidence relied upon, as well as ESIC’s Intended Sanction pending the offending party’s replies to ESIC during the allotted reply window notified in the Notice of Charge.

Due to the nature of the Spectator Bug Variants, and ESIC’s Penalty Mechanism as outlined in ESIC’s statement issued on the 5th of May 2022 (viewed here), each of the above participants have been provisionally suspended as at the date of their Notices of Charge from all ESIC Member Events.

Any time spent provisionally suspended will be credited to any formal period of suspension the offending parties may receive upon ESIC’s final determination (post reply window). Each offending party has the right to appeal the provisional suspension from ESIC member events. It should be noted that PGL, the organisers of the Antwerp Major (Major), and Valve the publisher of CS:GO are not members of ESIC. Consequently, ESIC has no jurisdiction to make decisions relating to the Major.

 

EVIDENCE RELIED UPON – DECLASSIFIED AS PUBLICLY AVAILABLE INFORMATION

In laying its charges, ESIC relied upon the following evidence:

Luis “peacemaker” Tadeu:

Did not act in an appropriate manner in response to a CS:GO free roam camera bug on 6 March 2018 during a match between Heroic and Imperial held at the ECS Season 5 Europe Challenger Cup (Conduct).

Evidence:

Team Enemy Team Tournament Date Map Round Start Round End Total Rounds Match Link Video Link
Heroic Imperial ECS Season 5 Europe Challenger Cup 6-Mar-18 Inferno 1-0 2-0 1 Link

 

Link

 

Intended Sanction: Suspension from all ESIC Member events for a period of time notified in the Notice of Charge but subject to a final determination by ESIC after considering any replies received.

Note: This participant is provisionally suspended from all ESIC Member events pending the outcome of these proceedings.

  

Sergey ‘hally’ Shavayev:

Did not act in an appropriate manner in response to the static spectator bug at CIS Rising League Season 3 (Conduct) 

Evidence:

Team Enemy Team Tournament Date Map Round Start Round End Total Rounds Match Link Video Link
Espada Dracarys CIS Rising League Season 3 27-Nov-19 Mirage 0-0 0-1 1 Link

 

Link

 

Intended Sanction: Suspension from all ESIC Member events for a period of time notified in the Notice of Charge but subject to a final determination by ESIC after considering any replies received.

Note: This participant is provisionally suspended from all ESIC Member events pending the outcome of these proceedings

 

Rafael ‘zakk’ Fernandes:

Did not act in an appropriate manner in response to a static spectator bug variant at ESL One Cologne 2018 North America Closed Qualifier (Conduct)

 Evidence:

Team Enemy Team Tournament Date Map Round Start Round End Total Rounds Match Link Video Link
9z River Plate Aorus League 2020 #3 Southern Cone 7-Aug-2020 Overpass 0 – 0 0 – 0 0.5 Link Link
Luminosity eUnited ESL One Cologne 2018 North America CloseD Qualifier 24-May-2018 Mirage 17 – 18 18 – 18 1 Link Link

 

Intended Sanction: Suspension from all ESIC Member events for a period of time notified in the Notice of Charge but subject to a final determination by ESIC after considering any replies received.

Note: This participant is provisionally suspended from all ESIC Member events pending the outcome of these proceedings.

 

EXPLANATORY NOTE REGARDING INTENDED SANCTIONS

ESIC has notified each offending party of an Intended Sanction. ESIC will determine the final sanction applicable in each case depending on the response received from the relevant offending party. Once determined, ESIC will notify its determination via public statement on its website only as well as its Sanctions Register.

 

REASON WHY ESIC HAS CHOSEN TO INCLUDE THE EVIDENCE LIST IN THIS STATEMENT

ESIC has elected to include the evidence related to the charges made out against the individuals mentioned in this statement as:

  1. The evidence is primarily if not wholly publicly available information;
  2. The evidence does not include any sensitive, or personal information;
  3. The evidence resembles the form of evidence ESIC chose to release in the first sanctions handed out by ESIC; and
  4. The evidence is of pertinent public interest.

When making a public statement, ESIC will make a determination on whether to make evidence public on a case-by-case basis.

 

NEXT STEPS RELATING TO THIS STATEMENT

ESIC will make a series of releases that notify charges that ESIC intends to impose on other affected participants. ESIC will place a notice for anticipated releases on its Open Investigations Register located here.

NEWS & PRESS

October 18, 2021

ESIC Declassified Report Into Allegations Against Players for Complicity

  • On 2nd September 2020, ESIC made its first public statement about exploitation of a spectator bug in CS:GO. Among the first three coaches sanctioned at the end of August 2020 was then Heroic coach,  Nicolai “HUNDEN” Petersen (“Mr. Petersen”), who was banned for his exploitation of the spectator bug during professional play.

 

 

  • On 4 September 2021, Mr. Petersen, following on from allegations he made publicly on Danish television several days before, sent ESIC information which he alleges provides evidence that the players who were playing for Heroic at the time of Mr. Petersen’s exploitation of the spectator bug were complicit in his exploits.

 

  • Petersen’s referral of ‘information’ which he stated supports his allegations (“Allegation Referral”) included:
  • A written statement from Mr. Petersen laying out his allegations.
  • Screenshots of text and messenger conversations with various individuals related to the team.
  • Screenshots of a contemporaneous text conversation with an anonymous individual known as “Robert” around the time of the original spectator bug bans of September 2020.
  • A voice recording and transcripts of Mr. Petersen’s conversation with Nikolaj “niko” Kristensen (“ Kristensen”).
  • A Non-Disclosure Agreement (unsigned) relating to the spectator bug incident that would, if signed, have prohibited the players from disclosing information publicly about the incident.

 

The report outlining the findings of this investigation can be accessed here.

NEWS & PRESS

July 07, 2021

ESIC Issues Additional Sanction Against Player Lim Vi Ron (“Hiroshi”) for Participating in Member Event While Banned

OVERVIEW:

ESIC, with excellent help from ESL Asia executives, has investigated an incident involving Lim Vi Ron (playing, in this instance, as “Hiroshi”, but having been banned for offences committed while playing as “NAMIERURO_YT”) breaching the conditions of his active ban under previous sanctioning action by attempting to participate in an ESIC member event under an alias. As a result of this offence, Lim Vi Ron has been issued with a further sanction of a one-year ban, in addition to his pre-existing sanction.

ESL, a long-standing ESIC member and operator of the ESL Mobile Open Brawl Stars Season 1, has taken further action to disqualify the individual and their team from the competition.

Comment from Ian Smith, Commissioner:

“Bans exist to ensure that threats to the integrity of esports are mitigated to the greatest extent possible. It is apparent that any individual who acts in a way to undermine this purpose is acting in bad faith and to the detriment of the industry. ESIC takes any breach of sanction conditions seriously.“

INVESTIGATION OVERVIEW:

Summary of Outcome

ESIC undertook a review of the evidence provided by ESL Asia and determined that Lim Vi Ron had attempted to circumvent his existing ban from competition by deception and that conduct constituted an offense under Article 2.4.5 of the Code of Conduct.

Article 2.4.5 of the Code of Conduct states that is an offence

Where the facts of the alleged incident are not adequately or clearly covered by any of the above offences, conduct that brings Esport, the Game, Event, ESIC or a Member into disrepute.”

By engaging in behaviour designed to avoid the conditions of a ban, the participant contravened Article 2.4.5 of the Code of Conduct. Upon assessment of this matter, the Commissioner has exercised his discretion to determine that this constitutes a Level 4 offense. Accordingly, the offending participant has been provided with a Notice of Charge detailing his offense and his sanction in the form of a ban for a period of 12 months from the date of his notice and his right to appeal clearly set out.

ESIC’s sanctions which are the subject of this release are summarised below:

  • Sanction against Lim Vi Ron: 12 Month Ban relating to ban avoidance in a Member event to run consecutively from the end of the pre-existing ban.

ESIC Ban End Date: 1 March 2023

Applicability of sanctions issued as a result of the investigation

As per all investigations conducted by ESIC, our determinations have effect across all of our membership. This includes members such as ESL, DreamHack, WePlay, BLAST, LVP, Eden and many others. ESIC also requests that all non-ESIC member tournament organisers honour these bans.

Commendations

ESIC would like to acknowledge the work of ESL Asia in assisting ESIC in its investigation in a timely manner, enabling this outcome to be reached.

For any further enquiries relating to this matter, please contact us at info@esic.gg.