[toc]A new esports integrity body delivered its first ruling on Wednesday, finding insufficient evidence to support multiple allegations of cheating in the second season of Rainbow Six Pro League.
The Esports Integrity Coalition found “no case to answer” against the Fenix organization, which was accused of dropping out of season two to help advance another organization, Penta, in the standings a few weeks before two of Fenix’s members joined Penta’s roster.
It also found no case against Penta which was accused of throwing a match in order to deny another team entrance to the finals of season two.
Some accusations stem from former player
A former Fenix team member accused Penta of coaxing two of his teammates, who had planned to join Penta in the future, into forfeiting Fenix’s entire season.
The action retroactively awarded Penta additional points in the league standings which allowed that team to earn one of the league’s top seeds at season’s end.
“This means Penta intentionally fixed a team in the past tense so they could profit in the long term, also earned a financial bonus by placing 4th place,” the player, known as TankNinjaz, wrote in a post on Sept. 1.
The player inferred that he went public with the accusations because he was denied recourse after going through official channels.
ESIC did not address any players by name in its ruling Wednesday.
ESL, the administrator of Rainbow Six Pro League and a formal partner of ESIC, emphasized earlier this year that players accused of wrongdoing would be considered innocent until proven guilty.
It warned that “false positives are a threat to the integrity of the anti-cheat tool.”
‘Exceptional circumstances’ prompted public statement
ESIC said it was asked to investigate whether or not either team or its players breached the coalition’s anti-corruption code. It did not disclose who asked it to investigate the claims.
The coalition said in a release on ESL’s website:
“Normally and in accordance with the Code, ESIC would not comment on investigations that are in progress or have concluded that there is no case to answer, but the allegations in this case have given rise to a great deal of accusation, speculation and comment on social media and we conclude, therefore, that exceptional circumstances exist and it is in the relevant teams’ and the League’s best interest that ESIC make a public statement.”
The investigation involved reviewing evidence outside of the public domain, ESIC said Wednesday. That evidence included recorded conversations between the teams’ players as well as anonymous sources.
ESIC said in the release it would not discuss the matter further, although integrity director Ian Smith confirmed to ESBR that the ruling was ESIC’s first regarding any esports title.
However, despite ruling that there was no case to answer regarding either claim, ESIC ended its release with an acknowledgement that the case could have new evidence which has not yet come to light.
It asked anyone with information to send it to [email protected].
Betting drives match-fixing
One of the main reasons the second of the two allegations, match-fixing, was found to be unproven was that there was no betting on the match in question.
According to ESIC, 90 percent of match-fixing is motivated in some way by fraudulent betting activity. This often involves bettors willing to pay players a cut of their winnings if the players agree to throw a match.
Rainbow Six Siege is one of the less popular of the professional esports, and the title does not drive a large amount of wagering, especially compared to titles like Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and Dota2.
Those games are largely responsible for driving estimates of the global esports betting handle for 2016 into the billions of dollars.
Putting a stop to match-fixing was one of the central aims of ESIC, which formed this Summer on the back of support from companies like ESL, Dreamhack, Sportradar, and Unikrn.