Pakistan cricketers lose appeals

Former Pakistan cricket skipper Salman Butt and bowler Mohammad Amir lose appeals against spot-fixing prison terms.

    Mohammad Amir, left, Salman Butt, centre, and Mohammad Asif, right, were sentenced at the beginning of November for their part in conspiring to fix part of a Test match against England last year [GALLO/GETTY]

    Two disgraced Pakistan cricketers lost their appeals against jail sentences on Wednesday in one of the sport's biggest fixing scandals.

    The judge at London's Court of Appeal upheld the prison terms handed to Salman Butt and Mohammad Amir for their role in spot-fixing during a Test between England and Pakistan last year.

    Justice Igor Judge said the cricketers betrayed their team, their country and their sport.

    Corruption

    Butt, the former Pakistan captain, was sentenced to two-and-a-half years in jail earlier this month after being convicted of conspiracy to cheat and conspiracy to accept corrupt payments.

    The 19-year-old Amir pleaded guilty and was handed a six-month sentence in a young offenders' institution.

    Mohammad Asif, who was sentenced to one year in jail for his part in the case, decided not to appeal. Agent Mazhar Majeed was sentenced to two years, eight months.

    The players were convicted of conspiring with Majeed to bowl deliberate no-balls as part of a betting scam during the fourth Test match at Lord's in August 2010.

    The cricketers were caught after Majeed was recorded by an undercover reporter working for the now-defunct News of the World tabloid saying that the three Pakistan players had accepted money to fix betting markets by bowling three no-balls at prearranged times.

    Majeed was secretly filmed accepting $242,000 in cash from the journalist.

    It was the biggest fixing scandal in cricket since South Africa captain Hansie Cronje was banned for life in 2000 for taking bribes from bookmakers.

    SOURCE: AP


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