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Rediff.com  » Cricket » Tainted trio to return home, paceman Wahab to be quizzed by Scotland Yard

Tainted trio to return home, paceman Wahab to be quizzed by Scotland Yard

Last updated on: September 09, 2010 21:52 IST

The three Pakistani players, who are at the centre of a spot-fixing scandal, will return home in the next few days, while fast bowler Wahab Riaz will appear before the police on September 14 for questioning in connection with the worst scandal that has rocked the world of cricket.

Disclosing this, PCB Chairman Ijaz Butt said that the three players will return since there are no police charges against them nor have their movements been restricted.

salman butt"They were interviewed for nine hours. If there was anything against them they would have been arrested. They did not arrest them," he said.

Butt however did not say why Riaz will be interrogated by the police.

"Police has also asked Wahab Riaz to be made available to them for an interview on September 14 and we have arranged for the interview in London."

Riaz will be the fourth Pakistani player to be questioned by police. Test captain Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir were provisionally suspended by the International Cricket Council (ICC) last week.

British tabloid News of the World last month accused Butt, Asif and Amir of taking bribe for bowling deliberate no-balls during the Lord's Test against England.

Butt, who returned to Lahore on Tuesday, said the Scotland Yard has not shared any incriminating material against the suspended players.

"Since the players are neither being charged nor is there any restriction on their movement, we have informed the police that they will be travelling back to Pakistan in the next few days," Butt said.

He said the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) would continue to cooperate with the police. "Rest assured we will leave no stone unturned to get to the bottom of the issue."

Refusing to go into details of the scandal since the matter was still under investigation, Butt said on August 29 Scotland Yard police came to hotel where the players were staying with warrants to search the rooms of 13 players.

"They took away some of the players' belongings but no incriminating material has been shared with us".

Butt said the police had recovered 2,500 pounds from Salman Butt's room and 1,500 pounds and Amir's room.

He claimed Salman was paid the money by his agent Mazhar Majeed as an advance for making an appearance at the opening of an ice cream parlour.

"The deal was worth 5,000 pounds and Salman got half the amount as an advance," Butt said.

Butt also said Amir had already declared that he had 1,500 pounds in his possession.

Butt said PCB cannot have a parallel investigation as the London Police is already probing the case and also lashed out at the ICC for not listening to Scotland Yard.

"We cannot have a parallel investigation. When there is a criminal investigation conducted by Scotland Yard, we cannot have a parallel probe. Scotland Yard had even written to the ICC to say that there can't be a parallel investigation and you should not do this," he said.

ICC had suspended the players following the expose and also filed charge-sheets against them.

Butt said ICC told them that they would deal with the players directly and not with the PCB.

"On September 2, the ICC served a notice of disciplinary charges and provisionally suspended them. We immediately contacted the ICC and requested them that the notices should be held in abeyance till the London police completes its investigation.

"But ICC has informed us that since the notices were served to the players, therefore they will respond to the players directly and not the PCB," he said.

Butt said they have also finalised a list of lawyers to represent the players if the need arises. "With the British High commissioner Wajid Hasan and Additional Attorney General KK Agha we finalised a list of top solicitors on September 7 to represent our three cricketers if the need arises," he said.

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