Pakistan batsman Khalid Latif has been handed a five-year ban and fined one million rupees by the anti-corruption tribunal after finding him guilty of six breaches of the Pakistan Cricket Board’s anti-corruption code. The detailed order of the tribunal released today confirmed that the three-member bench found Latif guilty off all six charges, brought against him by the PCB in the spot-fixing case during the Pakistan Super League in Dubai in February.
The tribunal, headed by a former judge of the Lahore High Court, has already banned Test opener Sharjeel Khan for five years with half of the sentence suspended on spot-fixing charges. PCB’s legal advisor Tafazzul Rizvi said the detailed order on Latif showed that the tribunal found him guilty of meeting with a bookmaker, Yousuf on 8th and 9th of February and agreeing to spot-fixing in a match. “It is irrelevant whether Khalid played a match or not. The full order finds him guilty of breaching the code of conduct.”
Latif has also been found guilty of trying to instigate teammates to spot-fix and convincing Sharjeel to meet with the bookmaker in Dubai. Latif and his lawyer now have 14 days to file an appeal against the ban and fine. Sharjeel has already appealed against his ban and the PCB has appointed a former judge of the Supreme court to hear his petition from Wednesday in Lahore. “Sharjeel has already filed his appeal while the PCB has also appealed with the independent adjudicator,” Rizvi said. He said the PCB had appealed since Sharjeel was found guilty on all six counts of violating the anti-corruption code, half of his ban should not be suspended and that he should also be fined. Rizvi also said that the cases being heard against Pakistani batsmen Nasir Jamshed and Shahzaib Hasan would also be decided soon by the tribunal.
Asked about a statement made by a senior official of the UK national crime agency before the tribunal about the possible involvement of few other Pakistani players in spot-fixing during the Bangladesh Premier League, Rizvi said since the tournament was a domestic event of the Bangladesh cricket board they would first have to take a decision on whether to open investigations into the allegations.
“If they don’t open investigations in 180 days then the PCB can decide to hold its own inquiry,” he said. Rizvi said while the PCB was conducting a disciplinary hearing against the accused cricketers but the Federal Investigation Agency could also concurrently hold criminal proceedings against the players on corruption and fraud charges.