German cheater gets two-year ban

| 0 | Chess Event Coverage

FM Christoph Natsidis, who was caught cheating at this year's German Championship, was sentenced a two-year ban by the German Chess Federation. The 23-year-old player from Bannewitz, Germany used a chess program on his smartphone during a game and afterwards admitted that he cheated.Christoph Natsidis | Photo © official website One June 4th, 2011 we reported on the cheating case in Germany. Natsidis' last-round game was declared lost after he had admitted that he used his smartphone, equipped with a strong chess program, during the game. We spoke to Natsidis' opponent Sebastian Siebrecht, who said:

(...) in a very concrete position where calculating was necessary, he was constantly away from the board. Three times, I made a move and it took 8-10 minutes for him to show up at the board. Naturally I started looking for him and I even waited for a while in the toilets. One toilet was occupied, but I didn't hear any typical 'toilet sounds'. (...)

After the game the arbiter and Siebrecht went to Natsidis. They found a smartphone in his pocket, with a chess program that was showing a position from the game, about five moves before the end. Natsidis then admitted, and apologized to Siebrecht. The 23-year-old FM was disqualified from the tournament, and missed out on his IM norm, which he had already secured after the penultimate round.

Two-year ban

The German Chess Federation has now published the following statement on its website (translated into English by us):

  • The two-year ban issued by Federal Tournament Director Ralph Alt, running from July 6, 2011 till July 5, 2013 has been accepted to the full extent by the Germand Chess Federation and is therefore immediately in effect.
  • The results of Natsidis scored at the 82nd German Championship will be annulled. All games played by him will be declared lost, and they will be declared won for his opponents. The German rating results will be corrected accordingly.
  • During the complete period of his ban, Christoph Natsidis won't be indexed in the ratings database. Games where Christoph Natsidis is involved during his suspension period, are not taken into account. Upon the expiration of his ban, Natsidis' rating is reactivated.
  • The German Chess Federation will inform FIDE, ECU and the national federations about this decision.
  • The German Chess Federation examines the creation of an additional category on [its website]. In this category imposed sactions by the Federation against players will be publicly documented, to provide tournament organizers with the information.
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