Thursday 14 December 2017

Pakistan officials in UK to quiz cricketers

Albert Kidd in London

Three Pakistani cricketers embroiled in allegations of match-fixing will be questioned by officials from their country later today as the furore over the claims continues.

Test captain Salman Butt and seam bowlers Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Aamer will travel from Taunton in Somerset to London for talks with Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Ijaz Butt and the country's high commissioner, team manager Yawar Saeed said.

After the meeting the three are expected to rejoin their team-mates, who are due to play a friendly against Somerset tomorrow.

Meanwhile, it emerged that three people have been arrested by UK Customs officials in connection with betting allegations against Pakistani players.

Two men and a woman, all from London, were questioned earlier this week as part of an investigation into money laundering before being released on bail, HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) said.

It said in a statement: "Three individuals were arrested on Sunday as part of an ongoing investigation into money laundering.

"This includes two 35-year-olds -- a male and a female -- from the Croydon area, and a 49-year-old male from the Wembley area.

"These individuals were arrested, questioned and have been bailed pending further investigation."

A HMRC spokeswoman refused to confirm whether the arrests were linked to the alleged betting scam reported by the 'News of the World'.

The newspaper said journalists posing as Far Eastern businessmen paid a middleman £150,000 (€181,728) to arrange for Pakistan players to deliberately bowl no-balls to order in last week's fourth Test against England at Lord's.

Following the report, Mazhar Majeed (35), a cricket agent who also owns Croydon Athletic Football Club, was arrested by Scotland Yard detectives and later released on police bail.

Four Pakistan players -- Butt, Aamer, Asif, and wicketkeeper Kamran Akmal -- were questioned by police over the allegations at their London hotel.

Irish Independent

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