The International Tennis Integrity Agency (ITIA) is sending a very strong message to tennis officials who might be considering bending the rules for gamblers with a hefty 12-year suspension of Bolivian tennis official Percy Flores. Flores is accused of more than 30 gambling-related offenses over the course of the past few year and won’t be working in tennis again anytime soon.
Flores’ suspension comes under the authority of the Tennis Anti-Corruption Program (TACP), which was instituted in the wake of a series of match-fixing scandals among amateur tennis players. The code gives the authorities of tennis’ governing body the ability to both fine and suspend players and judges accused of gambling-related wrongdoing.
In the Flores case, the ITIA instituted a 12-year suspension, along with a $15,000 fine. Flores was initially issued a 15-year suspension, but had three years suspended because she had cooperated with the investigation.
The offenses in the Flores case took place during a period between November 2021 and October 2022. More specifically, ITIA officials say that Flores was manipulating the official score by entering false scores into the official record on a handheld device used by tennis judges. It’s unclear who else was involved in the Flores scheme, but Flores is the one taking all of the heat at this moment.
While all sports take gambling violations seriously, tennis is a sports that takes its gambling rules much more seriously than almost any other sport. In a statement from an ITIA spokesperson, the organization laid down the law saying, “These rules are there to protect everyone in sport and outline how people must report any corrupt approach and list all offences in the program including match fixing, courtsiding and other corrupt activities.”
Flores is eligible to apply to return to the world of professional tennis in December of 2034.