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Ex-Leeds, Oldham, Leicester and Middlesbrough player turned Swindon coach sentenced for bribery

Swindon Town first team coach Tommy Wright has been sentenced for bribery which was exposed by the Telegraph newspaper in September 2016.

The 54-year-old, who was assistant manager at Barnsley at the time of the offence, was sentenced to 12 months in jail, suspended for a year, after being found guilty of two charges of accepting a bribe.

The trial, which took place at Southwark Crown Court, heard that Wright (who denied the charges) was given an envelope with cash worth up to £5,000 by an undercover reporter from the Daily Telegraph.

The BBC has reported that Wright, a ex-Leeds, Oldham, Leicester, Middlesbrough and Doncaster player, also leaked information about Barnsley footballers at a meeting in August 2016.

Two football agents, Giuseppe Pagliara, of Bury, and Dax Price, of Sittingbourne, also received suspended sentences as part of the same investigation.

Price was handed an 18-month sentence, suspended for 18 months, after being convicted of two charges of offering or promising a bribe contrary to the same act.

Pagliara, was given a two-year jail sentence, suspended for two years, after also being found guilty of two charges of offering or promising a bribe.

Speaking after the trial, Det Con Chris Glover from the City of London Police’s Fraud Squad, said: “This case is the first in the UK relating to corruption in the football industry and shows how offending of this extremely serious nature can lead to significant prison sentences.

“We are pleased justice has now been done and would like to take this opportunity to thank the Telegraph, Football Association, Crown Prosecution Service and Barnsley Football Club for their assistance with this case.”

After finding out that the Swindon coach was sentenced for bribery, the club said in a statement: Swindon Town can confirm first-team coach, Tommy Wright will remain in employment at the football club following his sentencing at Southwark Crown Court today.

“For offences committed prior to his employment with the club, Wright was found guilty on three charges of bribery and was given a suspended sentence of 12 months.

“Since his employment in August 2019, Wright’s conduct has been exemplary, and the club is certain that this will remain the case as his employment continues with us.

“Swindon Town will make no further comment on this matter.”

The Robins currently sit top of the League Two table, and are six points clear of 3rd place Crewe Alexandra and 4th place Plymouth Argyle.

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