Pakistan paceman Mohammad Asif will soon be deported from the United Arab Emirates after Dubai Public prosecutors dropped drug possession charges against him, an official said Thursday.
The 25-year-old fast bowler was seized at Dubai airport on June 1 on charges of possessing an illegal drug while returning home from India after featuring in a domestic tournament.
"The case has been dropped against Mohammad Asif due to insignificance ... he will be deported as soon as the police finalise the procedures," said Thursday Mohammad Al Nuaimi, the public prosecutor who handled Asif's case, according to the online version of the local daily Gulf News.
"It is definite that he committed the crime of smuggling and possessing 0.24 grams of opium as he was caught red-handed ... however in certain cases and for a faster litigation process the public prosecution drops a case due to insignificance and deports the suspect."
Pakistan's diplomatic sources in the UAE told AFP that the paceman will return home at the first available flight.
However, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) claimed they do not know about the proceedings.
The chief prosecutor in the case, Mohammad Ali Rustam, last week said the forensic examinations confirmed that Asif was in possession of the banned recreational drug opium, the Gulf News reported.
"When Asif was confronted with the findings (results of the forensic lab), the cricketer claimed that he was unaware that it was a drug and alleged that he used the substance for power enhancement," Rustam was quoted as saying.
The Federal Investigation Authority in Pakistan had said they will deal with Asif under their rules and regulations, while the PCB also announced it will hold a separate inquiry against the paceman.
Asif, who has claimed 51 wickets in 11 Test matches and 36 wickets in 31 one-day internationals, was dropped from the team after being initially named in the 16-man squad for the tri-series in Bangladesh.
Pakistan won the tri-series beating India by 25 runs in the final on June 14.