Amir leaves for London to face trial

Updated: 19 May 2011 16:08 IST

Former Pakistan paceman Mohammad Amir on Thursday left for London where he is set to face a criminal trial for corruption charges over alleged spot fixing.

Lahore:

Former Pakistan paceman Mohammad Amir on Thursday left for London where he is set to face a criminal trial for corruption charges over alleged spot fixing.

Amir, former captain Salman Butt, fellow fast bowler Mohammad Asif and their agent Mazher Majeed have been charged with conspiracy to cheat and conspiracy to obtain and accept corrupt payments.

The quartet were arrested after police inquiries following accusations in the News of the World newspaper that no-balls were deliberately bowled in the fourth Test match at London's Lord's Cricket Ground last August.

Friday's hearing at Southwark Crown Court, south London, is expected to be a procedural affair where the date for the trial proper will be set.

The three players face charges of conspiracy to cheat and conspiracy to obtain and accept corrupt payment - crimes punishable by two to seven years' imprisonment under English law.

The four accused appeared at a hearing in a London court on March 17, which granted them bail and ordered them to appear on May 20.

Amir said his visit had been delayed because of visa problems.

"Now I have sorted that out and am going to attend the hearing on Friday with a hope that this crisis is resolved soon," Amir told AFP.

Asif flew to London on Monday, while Butt said he was not required to attend the hearing.

"My lawyer will handle the hearing," Butt told AFP.

Asif also raised hopes of a quick resolution.

"I am going to London with a clear mind and that is to keep on fighting this case till my innocence is proven," Asif told reporters earlier this week.

A separate and independent International Cricket Council (ICC) anti-corruption tribunal has already banned the three players for a minimum of five years each.

All three have, however, filed appeals against their bans at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Topics : Cricket Mohammad Amir New Zealand Pakistan
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