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Bets on World Boxing events temporarily banned in Ontario over 'suspicious' wager activity

Yoenis Tellez speaks to fans after defeating Sergio Garcia after their super welterweight boxing match, Saturday, July 29, 2023, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher) Yoenis Tellez speaks to fans after defeating Sergio Garcia after their super welterweight boxing match, Saturday, July 29, 2023, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
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Bets on World Boxing Association events are now prohibited in Ontario after an investigation turned up evidence of ‘suspicious’ wager activity on a match held late last year.

According to a release from the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario issued Thursday, an investigation was launched in December 2023 following a match between Yoenis Tellez and Livan Navarro held in Orlando, Florida late last year.

The release states that suspicious betting patterns were reported over the 5.5 round match by two registered integrity monitors and a registered iGaming operator in Ontario. The commission also said Tellez’ manager is alleged to have placed $110,000 on the match.

Ultimately, the investigation found that bets related to WBA events do not currently meet the registrar’s standards. The ban, effective immediately, will be lifted once it has been confirmed that proper practices are being followed, the commission said.

“Ontarians who wish to bet on sporting events need to be confident that those events are fairly run, and that clear integrity safeguards are in place and enforced by an effective sport governing body,” Karin Schnarr, registrar and CEO of the AGCO, said in a statement.

“Knowing the popularity of boxing in Ontario, we look forward to reinstating betting on WBA events once appropriate safeguards against possible match-fixing and insider betting have been confirmed,” Schnarr said.

The announcement comes just a day after Jontay Porter, a former Raptors player, was banned for life from the NBA after an investigation found he disclosed confidential information to sports bettors and placed bets against his own team the league said. 

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