Spot-fixing trial October 19, 2011

Butt questioned on team-mates' role

Richard Sydenham at Southwark Crown Court

Salman Butt was questioned on the possible involvement of his former team-mates in fixing on the eleventh morning of the alleged spot-fixing trial on Wednesday, and met the prosecution's interrogation with a straight bat.

Butt, in the witness stand for the second consecutive day, was asked about other players, including fast bowlers Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Asif and Wahab Riaz, and was questioned on a line of dialogue recovered from agent Mazhar Majeed's phone.

Butt and Asif are facing charges of conspiracy to cheat, and conspiracy to obtain and accept corrupt payments, following the Lord's Test last year when they allegedly conspired with Majeed, Amir and others to bowl pre-planned no-balls. Butt and Asif deny the charges.

"Was Wahab Riaz in with the fixing, Mr Butt," asked Aftab Jafferjee QC for the prosecution when discussing text and phone dialogue surrounding The Oval Test that preceded Lord's.

"Those other people can answer better than me," was Butt's reply, having on several times rejected any notion that he was ever involved with corruption.

Jafferjee explained how the transfer of the initial £10,000, handed over by the undercover journalist to set up his sting, involved Wahab. Majeed had the money in the inside pocket of his jacket which he then gave to Wahab to wear, pointing out that Wahab was much bigger than Majeed and had been wearing a T-shirt.

Jafferjee suggested that the transfer of the cash was made by using Wahab, adding, "Was Wahab feeling a bit cold? He was eating an ice cream. He wasn't looking like he was a bit cold." To which Butt replied: "It depends on different people."

"But they don't eat ice cream in summer with a T-shirt on."

On another occasion, Jafferjee asked Butt whether Amir was involved in the fixing, having already acknowledged that he had suspicions when the scandal broke in the News of the World.

"You can ask him," was Butt's response, adding, "As I have said I had my suspicions."

Then Jafferjee asked of Asif and of his possible guilt within the fixing being alleged.

"He's here, he will tell you," Butt said.

On another occasion, Butt was asked to look at the printed transcript of a recovered text message sent at 1.00am during the Oval Test from an Indian number to Majeed.

The Indian contact said: "Kami (Kamran Akmal) and Amir minimum 13 off first three overs after Kami gives an indication by change of gloves with no wicket. It starts from round of overs, say 35 or 40, whichever is first after they come together. Next seven overs, maximum 15 runs."

Jafferjee probed Butt for his opinion on what was occurring in that message and suggested that fixing was being arranged.

"It shows what you are saying," Butt admitted. "That something is going on."

The case continues.

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