Canadian criminal probe opens for Porter scandal

NBA

Authorities in Canada are opening a criminal investigation into the betting scandal involving former Toronto Raptors player Jontay Porter.

Craig Abrams, spokesperson for the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP), told ESPN on Tuesday that the Investigation and Enforcement Bureau determined a criminal investigation is warranted after completing an assessment of available information related to “online betting irregularities from the Jan. 26 and March 20 Raptors games.”

Four men have been charged with wire fraud by U.S. authorities in New York in connection with prop bets placed on Porter’s statistics during the Jan. 26 game against the Los Angeles Clippers and the March 20 game against the Sacramento Kings. As of Tuesday, no charges against Porter have been announced.

Abrams told ESPN in an email that OPP is aware of the ongoing investigation by U.S. federal authorities and will be connecting with them as the investigation moves forward.

NBA commissioner Adam Silver banned Porter from the league April 17 after a league investigation found that he disclosed personal health information to known bettors, bet on the NBA and limited his participation in the March 20 game against the Kings. Porter played three minutes against the Kings before removing himself, citing illness.

Multiple sportsbooks reported receiving unusual betting interest on the under on Porter’s points, rebounds, 3-pointers and assists in the games in question, among the largest an $80,000 parlay that would’ve paid approximately $1.1 million.

“Jontay Porter is a good young man with strong faith that will get him through this,” Porter’s attorney Jeff Jensen said in a statement last week “He was in over his head due to a gambling addiction. He is undergoing treatment and has been fully cooperative with law enforcement.”

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