September 25, 2013

Lee Banned from Snooker for 12 Years for Match Fixing

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 10:30 am

Lee1Stephen Lee has today been handed what effectively amounts to a career-ending ban from snooker for 12 years for his part in match-fixing along with a £40,000 legal costs fine.

It was widely expected that the punishment handed out to the player would be one of a life ban from the sport and while it doesn’t quite go that far, it means that if Lee were to make a reappearance in professional snooker he’d be nearly 50 when attempting to do so.

The ban includes the 11 month period he has already spent out of the sport which means that he would be 49 before he could return as things stand.

Lee’s agent Adam Quigley has confirmed that the 38-year-old will lodge an appeal against the ban. Lee himself is yet to issue a statement.

The Full Statement:

WPBSA Statement – Stephen Lee

After a hearing that took place between 9th – 11th September 2013, on 16th September 2013 Adam Lewis QC found Stephen Lee was in breach of the 2005 and 2006 WPBSA Members Rule 2.9;

“Stephen Lee is found guilty of “agreeing an arrangement… [and of] …accepting or receiving or offering to receive… payment or… other… benefit… in connection with influencing the outcome or conduct of” each of the seven matches in breach of Rule 2.9.”

A hearing was held on 24th September 2013 where submissions on sanction were made by the WPBSA and Stephen Lee.

On 25th September 2013 Adam Lewis QC delivered his decision on sanction in writing.

He concluded that that the appropriate sanction is that Stephen Lee serve a Suspension of twelve years under Rule 12.1(a) of the Disciplinary Rules.

That suspension is to be calculated from 12 October 2012, when the interim suspension was imposed. Therefore Stephen Lee will not be able to participate in snooker before 12th October 2024.

He has ordered that he should pay a contribution towards those costs of £40,000.

The WPBSA has a zero tolerance approach to match fixing and this is further evidence of our uncompromising approach to dealing with such issues.

Jason Ferguson the Chairman of the WPBSA said: “We take no pride in having to deal with such serious issues. However this demonstrates our commitment to ensuring that snooker is free from corruption. It is an important part of our anti-corruption approach that players found to be involved in fixing matches or any aspect of a match are severely dealt with. We work closely with partners globally and the message we are sending is that if you get involved in match fixing you will be found out and removed from the sport.”

Under the WPBSA Disciplinary Rules Stephen Lee has a right to appeal the finding and the sentence imposed.

The hearings to deal with this matter were conducted through Sport Resolutions UK who are wholly independent of the WPBSA.

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