Tainted Pak players to be prosecuted in UK

London, February 4, 2011

Pakistan cricketers Mohammad Aamer, Mohammad Asif and Salman Butt, together with their agent, have been charged with corruption offences, England’s prosecution service said on Friday.

Simon Clements, head of the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) Special Crime Division, said: “We have decided that Mohammad Aamer, Mohammad Asif, Salman Butt and their agent, Mazhar Majeed, should be charged with conspiracy to obtain and accept corrupt payments and also conspiracy to cheat.

“These charges relate to allegations that Mr Majeed accepted money from a third party to arrange for the players to bowl ‘no balls’ on 26 and 27 August 2010, during Pakistan’s Fourth Test at Lord’s Cricket Ground in London.”

Butt and pace bowlers Mohammad Asif and teenage quick Mohammad Aamer are all accused of conspiring in the bowling of deliberate no-balls on last year’s tour of England — claims they all deny.

Butt, Asif and Aamer were provisionally suspended by the ICC in September 2010, with the world governing body’s code of conduct carrying a minimum five-year ban if corruption charges are proved. The maximum punishment is life out of the game.

The scandal came to light when Britain’s News of the World claimed that seven Pakistani players, including Butt, Aamer and Asif, took money from agent Mazhar Majeed to obey orders at specific stages in the Lord’s Test in August.

Scotland Yard detectives raided the team hotel in London, reportedly confiscating a huge amount of money from Butt’s room.

AFP