Soccer's top referees... not practising for a match... instead, learning about match fixing.

The game... under assault from organised crime worldwide.

Players, referees and officials... all coerced into rigging results.

SOUNDBITE (English) Ronald K. Noble, Interpol Secretary General:

"This is like terrorism. There is no region that's exempt or free from it, there's no country that's exempt or free from it. "


In fact, 50 countries investigated match fixing last year...

With 680 'suspicious' games identified since 2008.

Corruption that reaps crime gangs an estimated $15 billon a year.


SOUNDBITE (English) Ronald K. Noble, Interpol Secretary General:

"We've found organised crime threatening people, murdering people, extorting people. Vast, vast sums of money involved."

Those profits so easy to move... Interpol says even drug traffickers are switching to match fixing.

Police ARE cracking down... these raids in Hungary, netting criminals and cash.

And across Asia, sophisticated software now monitors betting plunges... alerting authorities when the fix is in.

SOUNDBITE (English) Ralf Mutschke, FIFA Security Director:

"We do have detection systems like the early warning system which can assist us in giving us information on strange, odd movements."

But on the field, breaking the silence isn't easy.

Simone Farina reported match fixing in Italy... where it nets the Mafia billions.

Shunned by teammates... he now teaches children in England.

SOUNDBITE (English) Simone Farina, Aston Villa youth coach who left Italian football after fixing approach:

"I know I did the right thing. Corruption is wrong, in football and life."

Sports officials and police say they need more help to unravel the web.. before the scandal tarnishes 'The Beautiful Game' forever.

SIGOUT - Name/Associated Press