Friday , Jul , 20 , 2007 C.Y. Ellis

FBI investigating NBA ref who allegedly bet games

New York, NY (Sports Network) – Former NBA referee Tim Donaghy is
under investigation by the FBI for allegedly betting on and fixing games
that he worked during the past two seasons, in a gambling scam that
reportedly involved members of the organized crime community in New York.

The New York Post broke the potentially earth-shattering story on Friday,
saying that the year-long investigation included one NBA referee who allegedly
was making calls to affect the outcome of the games he worked — ensuring that
the referee and those involved with the scam profited from the result.

Later Friday afternoon, numerous media sources reported Donaghy as the
referee in question.

The Philadelphia area native allegedly had a gambling problem, and fell into
debt with bookies that had mob ties. Games were allegedly fixed during the
2005-06 and 2006-07 seasons, the Post said. The story also reported that the
number of games affected are in the double digits.

After Donaghy’s name surfaced, NBA commissioner David Stern issued a brief
statement.

“As we previously stated, we have been cooperating with the FBI in their
investigation of allegations that a single NBA referee bet on NBA games that
he officiated,” Stern said. “As part of that cooperation, we were asked by the
Government not to comment about the investigation, but in light of the
widespread press coverage and the naming of the referee, Tim Donaghy, we
consider it appropriate to make a fuller statement.

“We would like to assure our fans that no amount of effort, time or personnel
is being spared to assist in this investigation, to bring to justice an
individual who has betrayed the most sacred trust in professional sports, and
to take the necessary steps to protect against this ever happening again. We
will have more to say at a press conference that will be scheduled for next
week.”