Chess Grandmaster Igors Rausis Caught Cheating with Cellphone Found in Toilet

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistJuly 13, 2019

A chess game is covered with snow in a park in Niederreifenberg near Frankfurt, Germany, Saturday, May 4, 2019. Parts of Germany have experienced a sprinkling of snow just weeks before the meteorological start of summer. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)
Michael Probst/Associated Press

The World Chess Federation (FIDE) announced Saturday that it caught chess grandmaster Igors Rausis cheating during a tournament in France.

According to ESPN.com, the FIDE noted that Rausis was "caught red-handed using his phone during a game."

A cellphone was found in a toilet that Rausis had used during the competition, and Rausis later admitted to using it to cheat.

Per Chess.com, Rausis said the following regarding the scandal: "I simply lost my mind yesterday. I confirmed the fact of using my phone during the game by written [statement]. What could I say more? ... At least what I committed yesterday is a good lesson, not for me—I played my last game of chess already."

FIDE director general Emil Sutovsky said in a Facebook post (h/t ESPN.com) that Rausis had been previously suspected of cheating, and he commented on the advancements that have been made in preventing cheating in chess: "Rausis is suspended from the tournament, and all materials will be sent to the ethical commission. It is impossible to completely eliminate the cheating, but the risk of being caught has increased significantly, and the penalties will become much more significant."

Sutovsky also said Rausis was reported to French police.

The 58-year-old Rausis was born in the Soviet Union and currently represents the Czech Republic after previously representing Latvia and Bangladesh.

Rausis became a grandmaster in 1992, and he is the No. 53 ranked chess player in the world, according to the FIDE.

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