The alert that led to the investigation into the betting on Hammer Lucas Paqueta was automated within a computer monitoring system used by book makers designed to look for suspicious patterns of betting.
A Betway insider has told 6foot2 that the deposit limit for a new account is just £5,000. Any higher deposit than that it would block the account. On single bets on yellow cards with football involved there is a £200 maximum bet and £5,000 maximum payout. The £100,000 maximum deposit and £500,000 maximum payout mentioned in Betway terms and conditions do not apply to new accounts and all bets. This information puts a different context on the alleged Lucas Paqueta suspicious betting pattern on yellow cards. The sums and payouts involved are likely to be a lot less than originally thought.
The suspicious betting pattern on its own is not proof and investigators must prove a collusion between the player with those who place the bets.
As yet the FA have failed to provide any evidence to Paqueta’s representatives.
That evidence should come in the form of an email, recorded telephone conversation or video or some other form of communication.
Considering the international borders and legal jurisdictions this may prove an impossible task for the FA to prove a case against the West Ham player.
Unless he confesses or a witness makes a statement this case is likely to fail after a lengthy investigation.
In 2021 the same system flagged a £310,000 bet on Arsenal player Granit Xhaka receiving a yellow card with another £55,000 in-play bet also placed on the yellow card.
In May this year the Arsenal player was completely cleared in the betting scam on the basis there was no evidence of the player’s involvement, but that investigation took 18 months to clear this name.
Paqueta refutes any knowledge of the betting and has protested his innocence.
It could be that evidence against the West Ham player is circumstantial and will be dropped in 18 months’ time.