The trial over match-fixing by referees and players in the German soccer league began this week. Of the six defendants in the case, 2 are referees, one was a player, and the other three were gamblers who bet on the games.

I have no problem with sports betting. Although I rarely do it (more for lack of funds than desire to) I enjoy making a wager now and again and having a personal stake in how a contest goes (I currently limit myself to fantasy football).

Cheating is always something to be looked down upon. No longer does everybody have an equal chance of making the right choice on their wager. The worst part of this entire debacle was not the people who were defrauded by making the bets, however. They went into it knowing that they could lose their single bet that they made.

One interested observer of the trial may well be Klaus Toppmoller, the coach who took Bayer Leverkusen to the Champions League final in 2002. Toppmoller was in charge at Hamburg, but lost his job after the defeat to Paderborn.

He lost his job because of a bad beat in a crooked game. That was his livelihood. One of the croats who organized the thing has apparently confessed, so hopefully they are put out of the business and others are deterred from getting into it.