Pakistan Cricketer Found Guilty Of Taking Bribes


LONDON – A battered Pakistan cricket was dealt a body blow on Tuesday when a former captain and one of its best bowlers were found guilty of taking bribes to fix part of a Test match against England.

Salman Butt, 27, and fast bowler Mohammad Asif, 28, are looking at seven years in a British jail for deliberately bowling no-balls at pre-arranged times during the Lord’s Test in August 2010.

The third player, 19-year-old Mohammad Aamir, was not tried after he admitted his part in the scam in September.

Butt and Asif, who are out on bail, sat impassively in the dock as the Southwark Crown Court in southeast London convicted them in the case that prosecutors said revealed rampant corruption at the heart of international cricket.

The sentence will be pronounced on Wednesday.

The three players have already been banned by the International Cricket Council for a minimum of five years.

Tuesday’s verdict is the first time that a British court has found sportsmen guilty in a betting scandal since 1964, when three Sheffield Wednesday footballers were given a four-month jail sentence for conspiring to lose a match.

After more than 17 hours of deliberation, the jury convicted Butt and Asif of conspiracy to obtain and accept corrupt payments and conspiracy to cheat at gambling.

The spot-fixing betting scam was uncovered by the now-defunct News of the World (NOTW) tabloid. spot-fixing involves pre-arranging certain incidents rather than throwing away an entire matc