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Serie B’s Bari penalized 1-point for match-fixing

July 4, 2013

ROME (AP) — Serie B club Bari plea bargained for a one-point penalty on Thursday for match-fixing which will be deducted from the southern team next season.

Bari will also pay a €25,000 ($32,000) fine under the deal made with the Italian Football Federation’s disciplinary committee for arranging two matches — Bari-Treviso (0-1) in May 2008 and Salernitana-Bari (3-2) in May 2009.

Bari was already docked seven points for other fixing cases last season when it finished 10th.

Bari lawyer Maurizio Paniz appeared pleased with the verdict.

“It took account that Bari is more of a victim than a protagonist and that responsibility should be subjective when players act against the interests of their club,” he said.

Several former Bari players also reached plea bargains.

Ex-Juventus assistant coach and Bari player Cristian Stellini received a six-month ban to be added to a previous suspension from last year. Stellini resigned from Antonio Conte’s staff at Juventus a year ago after his involvement in the scandal emerged.

Former Bari defender Andrea Masiello, who was arrested last year and on whose confession much of the inquiry was based, had 3 1/2 months added to his previous ban of 26 months.

Torino midfielder and former Bari player Alessandro Gazzi plea bargained for a 100-day ban plus a €40,000 ($52,000) fine.

The charges included fixing and failing to report fixing.

Most of the players who received plea bargains have also been indicted by a judge in Bari on charges of committing sports fraud.

At least 50 people have been arrested in Italy for match-fixing since the middle of 2011, with matches under investigation by prosecutors in Cremona, Bari and Napoli.

This marks the third consecutive offseason that point penalties have been handed out by the football federation. Four Serie A clubs were penalized last season.

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