Press Trust of India
NEW DELHI, 22 JULY: Thirteen years after the match-fixing scandal involving Hansie Cronje had rocked the cricket world, Delhi Police today filed a charge-sheet in the case in which the names of his compatriot cricketers Herschelle Gibbs and Nicky Boje have been left out.
Cronje, who was indicted by the Kings Commission of Inquiry in his home country, has been named but proceedings against him are abated in view of his death.
The Crime Branch of Delhi Police has named Cronje, Sanjeev Chawla, Rajesh Kalra, Manmohan Khattar, Sunil Dara alias Bittu and Kishan Kumar, brother of slain T-Series founder Gulshan Kumar, as accused in the case and has chargesheeted them for offences of cheating and criminal conspiracy under the IPC.
The police, in its 93-page charge-sheet, said that the proceedings against Cronje, who had died in a plane crash in 2002, be abated while the other five be summoned to face the prosecution in the case.
Gibbs had accepted before the Kings Commission of Inquiry, constituted in South Africa to probe the match-fixing scandal, that he was offered money by Cronje for under performance while Boje had denied his involvement in the saga, it said.
It said there is “sufficient evidence” to prove that the accused had entered into a conspiracy to fix matches played here between India and South Africa in February-March 2000.
“From the investigation conducted so far, there is sufficient evidence to prove that the accused persons….had entered into a criminal conspiracy to fix the cricket matches played between India and South Africa from 16 February 2000 to 20 March 2000 in India,” it said. “The first test match at Mumbai and the first one-day internationals at Cochin were fixed and the same resulted in wrongful gain to the accused and wrongful loss in general to the public at large who had gone believing that they would witness a truly competitive matches in which each player would perform optimally.
“The accused persons have thus committed the offences punishable under Sections 420 (cheating)/120-B (criminal conspiracy) of the IPC,” the charge-sheet said.
The charge-sheet, which was to be filed before Chief Metropolitan Magistrate (CMM) Amit Bansal, was filed before link magistrate Akash Jain as the CMM was on leave. The link magistrate has listed the matter for tomorrow before the CMM’s court.
The police, in its charge-sheet, said that Kalra, Kumar and Sunil are out on bail in the case while Chawla, the key accused, and Khattar are absconding. It said that Chawla is presently in London.
It said the matches were fixed during the series held here between India and South Africa during February-March 2000.
The police said an extortion case was lodged on 13 November 1999 by businessman Rama Kant Gupta who had alleged that he had received a threatening call from Shaheen Haithely from Dubai and the investigation into the case led them to the match-fixing scandal. It said that surveillance and interception of calls led to cracking of the case and it was revealed during the probe that Kishan Kumar was in touch with Shaheen.