SOURCE: Press and Public Affairs Bureau
The House of Representatives this week approved on second reading House Bill 8204 which seeks to redefine the crime of game-fixing and prescribe stiffer penalties.
The approved Anti-Game Fixing Bill aims to promote fair and competitive conduct of sports in the country and expand the elements and acts constituting the crime of game-fixing.
The bill, principally authored by Rep. Enrico Pineda (Party-list, 1-PACMAN) declares it is the policy of the State to promote the growth and development of sports in the country and protect the youth from the influence of persons who, through fraudulent schemes and machinations, engage in the practice of game fixing, point shaving and other nefarious practices that subvert the spirit of sportsmanship and competitive sports among Filipino athletes.
Under the bill, game-fixing is defined as "an act or series of acts wherein any person/s maliciously conduct/s or cause/s to be conducted any professional or amateur sports other than on the basis of honest playing skill or ability of the players or participants."
Game-fixing includes any arrangement, agreement or scheme wherein the skill or ability of any player or participant in a game, sport, race or sports competition shall be limited deliberately in order to influence or produce a predetermined result.
The bill also considers the elements of “valuable consideration” and “monetary gain” as prima facie evidence of game-fixing.
It seeks to impose on the offender a penalty of imprisonment of six years and one day to 12 years and a fine of P1 million to P5 million, or both, at the discretion of the court. This is when the offender is an athlete, promoter, referee, umpire, judge, coach in the game, race or sports competition, or any other sports officials.
The bill also penalizes the offender with perpetual disqualification from participation in amateur and professional sports in the country.
The bill mandates the Philippine Sports Commission, (PSC), Philippine Olympic Committee (POC), Games and Amusement Board (GAB), National Sports Association (NSA), Department of Education (DepEd), Commission on Higher Education (CHED) to ensure strict enforcement of the accessory penalty.
Other authors of the bill are Reps. Ricardo Belmonte, Ron Salo, Teodoro Montoro, Orestes Salon, Manuel Luis Lopez, Benhur Lopez, Aniceto John Bertiz, Salvador Belaro, Virgilio Lacson, Carlos Roman Uybarreta, Conrado Estrella, Rogelio Pacquiao, Allen Jesse Mangaoang, Michael Romero, Cristina Roa-Puno, Dennis Laogan, Frederick Siao, Cristal Bagatsing, Pablo Ortega, Arnolfo Teves, Mark Aeron Sambar and Jericho Jonas Nograles. | Eddie Galvez