UPDATE: Multiplay have issued a statement, effectively banning Leigh from all Insomnia events in the coming year. Mark Buckley, Esports Community Manager for Multiplay had this to say:
Multiplay has come to the decision to ban Joee from participating in prized events at any Insomnia event for a minimum period of 12 months, at which point the player is welcome to appeal the ban. We would like to stress once again that players cheating in any form will not be taken lightly and we will continue to remain vigilant against cheating at our events.
We would also like to reiterate that any players with a VAC ban for CSGO on their account will not be able to compete in any prized tournament for 12 months following the ban.
UPDATE: The Steam account associated with Joee has received a VAC Ban. Considering how VAC works, this could potentially put forward further speculation over his use of this cheat, or that the cheat he used was a well-known, already detected cheat.
It’s that time again. Well known UK player Joseph “Joee” Leigh has been caught and banned for cheating. This occurred during his team’s game against Rize Gaming UK. This is a ban that has sent shock-waves through the scene, as it brings surprise considering the position this player has enjoyed in the scene, featuring some fairly high level teams.
Leigh is a player with a fairly well know past, recently featuring in United Estonia and FM eSports with which he finished third at both ESL UK Prem Finals they attended. Most recently he stepped in for Infused at epic.18 when they were down a player. However it is this qualifier for the ESL UK Prem where he’s slipped up on the wire and ended up with a severe two year ESL-wide ban. This could, however, be a more severe ban than first anticipated by the Mancunian, as with Ben “KRBY” Kirby getting banned by Multiplay, rumours are circulating that he will receive a similar ban from the upcoming Insomnia competition. Rumours also circulating that a similar ban might come into effect from epic.LAN too.
Video of his ban can be found here, with his team’s reaction included.
— Joe (@Joee_leigh) August 8, 2016
Response from the scene has been a mix of shock, surprise and anger from both former team-mates and those currently playing with him.
Charlie “pickles” Pickles, team-mate of Leigh in his game
Before the game we were playing on retake, getting warm for the game and he was hitting dodgy shots, its known in the UK as a joke that Joee cheats however I knew there was something dodgy going on, played the game and he was on 4 frags in the first half… he then says “ive crashed” restarts his pc and comes back at which point I was saying he’s clearly toggling… he comes back, few rounds in to T half he’s still not done much for us, very quiet, and then he gets banned for cheating… its sad that this has happened at this level and it ruins opportunities for other players, but fair play to him if that’s what he felt he needed to do.
Another team-mate, former CAZ player Ben “r0m” Smith, also chipped in.
What can I say… it’s became somewhat of a meme / joke that Joee actually cheats. It’s been going on for that long everyone just assumed he didn’t cheat. My mix team for this was not meant to be something special but would have been fun to play the full tournament. I’m over the moon this has happened though as it’s absolutely wrong of him to intentionally cheat other people out of potential prize pools etc. He’ll serve his time and I’m sure we’ll never see him playing any kind of top UK CS ever again. Thankfully.
Coming out of this, however, is what else is coming out of the TeamSpeak server that Leigh is a part of. This is a community that has been known for making disparaging comments about the UK scene in Twitch chats. Anyway, it’s come to my attention from a fair amount of UK players that the majority of that TS have partaken in cheating. This includes ozzy, a player who replied to Joe’s tweet about his ESL ban with a link to the software they’re allegedly using.
Notably, this speculation originally came off of the back of KRBY’s ban, of which a large number of these players knew about Platinum Cheats and the use around it. ozzy is one player allegedly cheating hard during the qualifier, as well as allegations of others intending to go to LAN and cheat. This alleged roster would’ve been partly made up of Joseph “Joee” Leigh, Mick “MCK” McDonald and Alex “alexE” Erdogan. Other players alleged to be using this “League Cheats” service were chrisw0w, jenko and dreamn. If these allegations all turn out to be true then a massive blade would’ve fallen onto UK CS, taking with it some extremely well known players with it.
Joee has had this to say about his ban
He also tweeted a list alleging who else was involved in the purchase of this cheat, of which all have strenuously denied these claims.
But for now, let’s just bask in the knowledge that another cheater has gone and we’re well on the way to cleaning up the scene. But, also remembering that there’s a long way to go until we’ve truly cleaned the house. But for now it’s a sad end to someone who was once a good player, as well as a top bloke, with top 3 finishes at the most recent ESL UK Prem events. Goodbye Joe.