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ICC Provisionally Suspends Tainted Pak Trio

London: International Cricket Council (ICC) has provisionally suspended and charged three tainted Pakistan players under its anti-corruption code in the wake of the match-fixing scandal during the team's tour of England. A statement issued by
PTI September 03, 2010 8:47 IST
PTI
London: International Cricket Council (ICC) has provisionally suspended and charged three tainted Pakistan players under its anti-corruption code in the wake of the match-fixing scandal during the team's tour of England.

A statement issued by ICC confirmed that Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir "have been officially notified of the offences they are alleged to have committed and have been provisionally suspended pending a decision on those charges.

"In accordance with the provisions of the code, this means they are immediately barred from participating in all cricket and related activities until the case has been concluded."

The trio are now due to appear before the Scotland Yard detectives for further questioning today.

The players have a right to contest this provisional suspension and a further opportunity to defend these charges at a full hearing before an independent Anti-Corruption Tribunal in accordance with Article 5 of the code, it noted.

The players have 14 days from their receipt of the charge sheet to indicate their desire for a hearing, the sport's governing body said.

"We will not tolerate corruption in cricket," ICC's Chief Executive Haroon Lorgat said, adding that "we must be decisive with such matters and if proven, these offences carry serious penalties up to a life ban."

"The ICC will do everything possible to keep such conduct out of the game and we will stop at nothing to protect the sport's integrity. While we believe the problem is not widespread, we must always be vigilant."

The game's integrity is of "paramount importance", the ICC Chief Executive said.

"Prompt and decisive action will be taken against those who seek to harm it. However, the facts must first be established through a thorough investigation and it is important to respect the right of due process when addressing serious allegations of this sort," he said.

"Make no mistake -- once the process is complete, if any players are found to be guilty, the ICC will ensure that the appropriate punishment is handed out. We will not tolerate corruption in this great game."

The alleged offences against Pakistani players, if proved, would involve the imposition of a ban on them. There is also a possibility, at the discretion of the independent tribunal, that a fine would be imposed in addition to a ban.

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) had announced that it was withdrawing the three players from the one-day series in England until the completion of the inquiry. PTI