ICC record statements of Waqar, Afridi, Najam in fixing case

Karachi: The ICC anti-corruption and security unit has recorded the statements of Pakistan coach Waqar Younis, ODI captain Shahid Afridi and team security manager Colonel Khawaja Najam as part of its evidence building process in the spot-fixing case.

“The statements of these three Pakistan team members are part of the evidence documents and file prepared by the ICC against Salman Butt, Muhammad Asif and Muhammad Aamir,” one well placed source aware of the case told on reporters.

“The statements of the three players were recorded especially while the ICC ACU was preparing its file of evidence against the trio,” he said.

The source said that the lawyers for the three players were finding themselves short of time to prepare for the case as the ICC ACU has sent them a long list of documentary evidence against the three players.

The three players will attend a hearing of the ICC code of conduct commission tribunal in Doha from January 6 to 11 in which the three member tribunal decide if the ICC ACU have enough evidence to prove the charges against the tainted trio.

If the tribunals finds the evidence strong the three players face long term bans.

“The lawyers for the players are going through all the evidence sent to them by the ICC specially Aitzaz Ahsan who recently agreed to represent Salman Butt at the hearing,” the source said.

He said the lawyers were working on a strategy to find technical lacunas in the ICC ACU code and the ongoing investigations by Scotland Yard into the spot-fixing charges against the three players and also in the method adopted to suspend the trio since August.

Khalid Ranjha, one of the lawyers who represented Butt in the ICC appeal hearing in Dubai in late October where the appeals of Butt and Aamir against their suspensions were rejected by the one-man tribunal, has already withdrawn himself from the case.

Ranjha has said the presence of Michael Beloff who sat on the one-man appeals tribunal on the three member code of conduct commission tribunal was contradictory and basically meant there was little chance for the trio to get proper justice.

“We objected to Beloff’s presence in the full hearing since he has already rejected their appeals,” Ranjha said.

Meanwhile the “Jang” daily newspaper has reported that the string of evidences collected against the three players was so strong that Butt and Asif face life bans while Aamir could get some leniency because of his young age.

“The evidence collected by the ICC is very strong and Butt and Asif in all likelihood will get life bans or long term bans,” the newspaper quoted sources as saying on Tuesday.