Pakistan Cricket Board's (PCB) Anti-Corruption Tribunal (ACT) held a preliminary hearing today at the National Cricket Academy in Lahore where formal charges were read out against Sharjeel Khan in the ongoing Pakistan Super League (PSL) spot fixing case.
The tribunal is comprised of chairman Justice Asghar Haider, Lieutenant General Tauqir Zia, Wasim Bari, General Manager Legal Affairs PCB Salman Naseer, the Head of PCB's Vigilance and Security Department Colonel Mohammad Azam and PCB's legal adviser Taffazul Rizvi who was accompanied by Advocate Haider Ali Khan.
Sharjeel Khan was also resent at the hearing accompanied by Advocate Shaigan Ijaz.
Reading out charges against Sharjeel Khan the tribunal leveled allegations of breaching the PCB Anti-Corruption Code for Participants 2015:
2.1.1 Fixing or contriving in any way or otherwise influencing improperly, or being a party to any agreement or effort to fix or contrive in any way or otherwise influence improperly, the result, progress, conduct or any other aspect of any Domestic Match, including (without limitation) by deliberately under-performing therein.
2.1.2 Ensuring for Betting or other corrupt purposes the occurrence of a particular incident in a Domestic Match.
2.1.3 Seeking, accepting, offering or agreeing to accept any bribe or other Reward to (a) fix or to contrive in any way or otherwise to influence improperly the result, progress, conduct or any other aspect of any Domestic Match or (b) ensure for Betting or other corrupt purposes the occurrence of a particular incident in a Domestic Match.
2.4.4 Failing to disclose to the PCB Vigilance and Security Department (without unnecessary delay) full details of any approaches or invitations received by the Participant to engage in Corrupt Conduct under this Anti-Corruption Code.
2.4.5 Failing or refusing to disclose to the PCB Vigilance and Security Department (without unnecessary delay) full details of any incident, fact, or matter that comes to the attention of a Participant that may evidence Corrupt Conduct under this Anti-Corruption Code by another Participant, including (without limitation) approaches or invitations that have been received by another Participant to engage in conduct that would amount to a breach of this Anti-Corruption Code.
The tribunal agreed upon the procedure and timelines to be adopted in accordance with the Anti-Corruption Code. The PCB will submit its opening brief detailing its claims along with the evidence on April 14.
Sharjeel Khan will be given time till May 5 to respond to the claims, following which the PCB will file a rebuttal by May 10, at its own discretion.
Khalid Latif did not make an appearance at the hearing, sending a prior application to the chairman of the tribunal citing health reasons and seeking an adjournment for the hearing till next week.
Accepting his application, the tribunal adjourned his hearing till March 31 and added that no further adjournments would be granted.
Both Sharjeel and Khalid were provisionally suspended on February 10 under the PCB’s Anti-Corruption Code as part of an investigation into alleged attempts to corrupt the 2017 PSL event.
The players were handed over a charge sheet a week after they were sent home from the PSL in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). They were charged for breaching various articles under Clause 2, including specific ones to attempt to corrupt a game, as well as failure to disclose suspect approaches.
So far, five Pakistani cricketers have been suspended in the spot-fixing case; besides Sharjeel and Khalid, the list includes Shahzaib Hasan, Mohammad Irfan, and Nasir Jamshed.
On March 20, Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan approved putting the names of the five players involved in the PSL spot-fixing scandal on the Exit Control List (ECL). The minister also ordered investigations against the bookies involved in the practice as well.