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Former teammates charged for match fixing

Saturday, May 24, 2014

LONDON - The England and Wales Cricket Board has charged Lou Vincent and his former Sussex teammate Naved Arif with fixing the outcome of a county match, the governing body announced on Thursday.

Vincent, the former New Zealand batsman, who has already confessed to fixing in several countries, has been charged with a total of 14 offences in relation to two county matches in August 2011 a Twenty20 match between Sussex and Lancashire and a 40-over game between Sussex and Kent.

Arif, a Pakistani, has been charged with six offences in relation to the 40-over game between Sussex and Kent in August 2011.

The ECB said both players had been "provisionally suspended from all cricketing activities" worldwide.

Chris Watts, the head of the ECB's anti-corruption unit, said in a board statement: "This has been an extremely complex and lengthy investigation co-ordinated across many jurisdictions around the world.

"This matter is now the subject of formal legal proceedings and we will therefore make no further comment other than to re-iterate our determination to bring to account the very small minority who seek to corrupt cricket." .

If the men are found guilty, it would be the first proven case of the result of a county match being fixed.

British newspaper The Telegraph added there were suspicions at the time the match was corrupt but it was cleared by the ICC's much-criticised anti-corruption unit, under fire for its failure to bring to book a major fixer.

But the case was reopened in August 2012 by the ECB's own security unit, led by former Metropolitan Police detective Chris Watts.

Whether Vincent, who is now in Auckland, and Arif will face criminal charges will depend upon whether British prosecutors decide if such action is the best use of taxpayers' money.

The controversial Lord's Test of 2011 led to three Pakistan players Salman Butt, Mohammed Asif and Mohammed Aamer being banned and jailed for their roles in a spot-fixing scam.

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