News Sports Law 3rd Mar 2020

Christopher Coltart QC acts for FA in successful appeal in Daniel Sturridge case

Daniel Sturridge, formerly of Liverpool FC and England, was charged by The FA in November 2018 with breaching its inside information rules. It was alleged that Mr Sturridge had passed inside information about his prospective transfer moves to friends and family, so that they could place bets on those moves accordingly.

The original Regulatory Commission which heard the case in April 2019 upheld two of the charges but dismissed the rest. By way of sanction, it imposed an effective playing ban of two weeks on Mr Sturridge and fined him £75,000.

Christopher Coltart QC represented The FA in the subsequent appeal. It was argued on behalf of The FA that the Regulatory Commission had misconstrued the relevant regulations, arrived at factual determinations which were unsustainable and imposed an unduly lenient sanction for those charges which had been proved.

Those submissions were upheld by the Appeal Board, which found two further charges to be proved and which increased the sanction to one of 4 months’ suspension. The fine imposed was also doubled to £150,000.

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