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Aamir leaves to face criminal trial, Butt 'excused' by court

Published: Friday, May 20, 2011, 0:00 [IST]
 
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Trial for the banned Pak trio on May 20

Lahore, May 20: Pakistan's banned cricketer Muhammad Aamir has left for London to face a criminal trial in a Southwark Crown Court but Salman Butt will not be present at the hearing on May 20. Mohammed Asif, the third cricketer facing corruption charges, had left for the hearing early this week while Aamir left on May 19 after obtaining his visa.

Yasin Patel, the UK based lawyer, confirmed that Butt will not be attending the trial on Friday.

"He has been excused by the court so he will not attend in person and will be represented by me," Patel said.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) special crime division of the United Kingdom has charged Aamir, Butt, Muhammad Asif along with their agent Mazhar Majeed of conspiracy to commit fraud and cheat during the Lord's Test against England, in 2010.

All three players have also applied for legal aid from the legal aid commission of the United Kingdom and been allowed assistance.

Sources said the hearing on May 20 is most likely to be of administrative nature and the actual date for the criminal trial could be finalised which is also why Butt had decided to skip the trial.

The three players had appeared before a crown magistrate on March 17 in a Westminister court where the charges were laid out against them by the CPS.

Aamir before leaving said his visit had been delayed because of visa problems.

"I am going to London in the hope that this issue is settled soon. It is hard not go without playing cricket and it getting more difficult now," he told the media.

The three players have already been banned for minimum five years by the ICC's anti-corruption tribunal last February on charges of spot-fixing during the Lord's Test.

The trio have appealed against their bans with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Switzerland.

PTI

Read more about: pakistan, salman butt, mohammed aamir
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