Former ICC chief rues lack of power

Melbourne: Former ICC chief, Malcolm Speed, has rued the lack of power for the game`s Anti Corruption and Security Unit (ACSU) during his tenure as a major hurdle in unearthing the match-fixers.

The veteran administrator said that though the ASCU was adequately resourced in his time, they had to work in accordance with the legal system of each country.

The investigators had to pass on tip-offs about corrupt activity to local police, who had more wide-ranging powers, the 63-year-old said.

Speed revealed that anti-corruption officers did not have the power to tap phones, scrutinise financial records or enact any kind of sting when he was at the helm, which at times might have helped the offenders go scot free.

Interestingly, it was the sting orchestrated by the now defunct `News of The World` journalist Mazhar Mehmood which resulted in the three disgraced Pakistan cricketers going to prison.

"Comment has been made that the anti-corruption unit couldn`t catch these guys -- it was up to the (News of the World) journalist to do that -- but I think in this area you take what is given to you, the journalist was able to spring this trap, cricket has been able to take hold of that and impose lengthy bans on these players," Speed was quoted as saying in a leading daily.

The former world cricket boss believes the jail term for former Pakistan captain Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir will act as a deterrent for others.

Speed has long advocated prison terms as part of consistent laws dealing with sports betting and match-fixing in Australia.

Earlier while sentencing the tainted cricketers, Justice Jeremy Cooke had said it was up to the governing body to discover how far the rot had spread.


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