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'Mr X', who gave Heath Streak two bitcoins while also presenting the former Zimbabwe captain with an expensive phone for his wife, is understood to be Indian businessman Deepak Agarwal, who was banned last year until 2022 by the ICC for breaching various anti-corruption codes.
On Wednesday, the ICC banned Streak for eight years after being found guilty for five charges, including failing to disclose approaches, facilitating contact with various players, and accepting gifts from a corruptor. The ICC described the corruptor as being from India and identified him only as "Mr X".
Agarwal, who is understood to be based in Delhi and is in his mid-30s, was also the corruptor who had approached former Bangladesh captain Shakib al Hasan, who was banned by the ICC after being found guilty on three charges, including failing to report approaches from the Indian businessman.
In December 2019, Agarwal himself was charged by the ICC's anti-corruption unit for being a "participant" in corrupt activities after being extensively probed by the ACU for over a year. While speaking to Agarwal in the days leading up to Christmas in 2018, the ICC's ACU team found Agarwal was "engaged" in WhatsApp conversations with an unnamed person the ICC had referred to as "Mr X" at the time.
This "Mr X" was facing several allegations the ACU had been investigating. He was a person Agarwal had to introduce to people, including players, with the intention of engaging them in corruption and get information from them. ESPNcricinfo understands that the "Mr X" in that context was Streak.
While banning him, the ICC said Agarwal was found guilty for "obstructing or delaying" an investigation including "concealing, tampering with or destroying any documentation or other information that may be relevant to that investigation and/or that may be evidence of or may lead to the discovery of evidence of corrupt conduct" under the ACU code.
During the investigation, Agarwal had handed in one of his phones from which ICC's ACU team found incriminating evidence, via WhatsApp conversations, of the corruptor attempting to influence Streak.
"In these conversations, Mr Agarwal effectively instructed Mr X as to what to say to the ACU over certain matters to ensure that they both told the same story (a story which on occasions was not true) and consequently misled or obstructed the ACU's investigation," the ICC said in a statement last April. "Mr X also sought clarification from Mr Agarwal over the interview process and what Mr Agarwal had told the ACU on certain matters. In effect, Mr Agarwal and Mr X contrived together to mislead the ACU investigation and not to tell the truth in their answers."
Today, the ICC revealed that before meeting up with the ACU team in January 2019, Streak "engaged in a series of WhatsApp messages with Mr X [Agarwal]", well aware that "Mr X himself had recently" been probed. "Prior to his interview with the ACU, Mr Streak engaged in a series of WhatsApp messages with Mr X, knowing that Mr X himself had recently been interviewed by the ACU. These WhatsApp conversations between Mr X and Mr Streak related to what Mr X had told the ACU in his interviews.
"In these conversations, Mr Streak has admitted that he and Mr X effectively discussed what Mr Streak should say in the interviews to ensure that they both told the same story (a story which on occasions was not true) and consequently he has admitted that his conduct in so doing could be construed as misleading or obstructing the ACU's investigation. Mr Streak also sought clarification from Mr X over the interview process and what Mr X had told the ACU on certain matters."