Riot Games bans Korean League of Legends player

ROX tigers mid laner Lindarang left Thursday's LCK match because of an apparent illness.
ROX tigers mid laner Lindarang left Thursday's League Champions Korea (LCK) match because of an apparent illness.

Riot Games announced early Friday that Lee “Sylph” Jae-ha, substitute for the ROX Tigers, has been banned from competitive play until next year.

According to Riot’s statement, the ban stems from Sylph using a bot to artificially level up his account. The ban is retroactive to Feb. 26, making him eligible to return to competitive play next Feb. 26. The ban is technically 10  competitive months, but November and December aren’t considered as such by Riot, which extends the punishment through the winter.

According to the statement, the ban could also include a $5,000 fine and 250 hours of community service, but that was left undecided.

Sylph, ROX Tigers’ backup mid laner, hadn’t played a match yet in this split of League Champions Korea.

A 10-month ban is the maximum penalty for this offense, according to Riot’s recently-released global penalty index. The typical and minimum sentence for the offense was a five-month ban.

Sylph’s ban is also the first major punishment handed down since Riot released its penalty indexes last month in an attempt to be more transparent. In its statement, Riot specifically mentioned transparency in continuing to make progress in its professional scene.

The ROX Tigers, 10-0 and leading the LCK, resume play Thursday against SBENU.

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