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Court sent to jail all involved in spot fixing culprit

Breaking News/London: Court announced the decision and all three Pakistani Cricketers Former Captain Salman Butt, Muhammad Aamir, Muhammad Asif and agent Mazhar Majeed sent to jail on Thursday.

 Pakistan Spot fixing

Pakistan cricketers Salman Butt, Muhammad Aamir and Mohammad Asif and agent Mazhar Majeed will all be jailed for their parts in spot fixing case involving a Test match against England at The Lord’s, a judge declared on Thursday.

Judge Cooke held Mazhar Majeed the main culprit, who was sentenced 2 years and 8 months in jail.

Pakistan former captain Salman Butt has been sentenced two years and six months in jail, as he was a captain so he should have been most responsible.

Meantime, Muhammad Asif was given one year term to serve in jail.

Judge Cooke said Muhammad Aamir and family put up the pressure and he is the youngest player belonging to a far-flung village; accordingly, he is sentenced six months in jail.

Judge Cooke recommended more punishment for Salman Butt than Muhammad Asif and Aamir.

ustice Cooke held Mazhar Majeed the main culprit, who was sentenced 2 years and 8 months in jail.

Each defendant could be hit with unlimited fines, up to seven years for conspiring to accept corrupt payments and two years for conspiring to cheat by pre-arranging no-balls for shadowy South Asian betting rings.

The scandal, surrounding fixed events at the August 2010 Test at Lord’s between hosts England and Pakistan, has rocked the world of cricket, a sport founded on fair play ideals.

As their lawyers pleaded for their clients during a hearing on Wednesday, new claims emerged, with allegations and counter-claims flying across the packed-out courtroom.

The players’ agent, Majeed, who it emerged had earlier pleaded guilty over the scam, claimed that the extent of the corruption in the Pakistan team went beyond the current case.

His lawyer Mark Milliken-Smith claimed that Butt had first raised the idea of spot-fixing, adding that his client had been “absolutely amazed” when the former captain had sounded him out.

Majeed, 36, was caught in a sting when he took £150,000 ($240,000, 175,000 euros) from an undercover newspaper reporter to lay on rigged events.

Milliken-Smith said his client had paid out £65,000 to Asif, £10,000 to Butt and £2,500 to Aamer, explaining that the larger amount was paid to Asif to ensure he did not switch to another fixing racket.

Lawyers for Butt and Asif dismissed the claims about the cash.

Milliken-Smith said Butt had approached the agent at the 2009 Twenty20 World Cup, complaining that junior teammates had more lavish lifestyles because they were into illegal fixing.

Majeed was introduced to an Indian bookmaker called Sanjay and it was agreed that the agent would be the middle man between the bookie and the cricketers.

Majeed “was, we respectfully submit, yes, the arranger for the players. He was not the corruptor”, his lawyer said.

Ali Bajwa, the lawyer for 27-year-old Butt, said his client knew his career was over and he now stood to lose his family too — but he denied Butt initiated the scam.

Appealing for a suspended sentence, he said Butt had been left almost broke by the scandal and had gone from a “national hero to a figure of contempt”.

Asif’s lawyer meanwhile said it would be “laughable if it were not so serious” if one no-ball was to ruin the 28-year-old’s career.

In a statement read to the court, Aamer, 19, said he had been put under pressure to cheat and had feared for his future in the national side if he did not get involved.

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