Gulam Bodi could find himself subject to a criminal investigation © Associated Press
South Africa’s domestic match-fixing scandal could move into the courtroom after CSA confirmed it had sent the information in its possession to the South African Police Services. An update given at a CSA board meeting in Johannesburg on Friday stated that the matter was reported last year to the relevant police crime unit who will “deal with the criminal aspects of the investigation”.
When contacted previously by ESPNcricinfo, brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi, the spokesperson for the directorate for priority crime investigations, said the police were “aware that there is an investigation going on but we have not received anything”. Mulaudzi was unavailable for comment on Friday but another police source confirmed the department had still not received any information.
The priority crime investigation department would be the first port of call for a complaint to be laid but the case, if taken up, would be handled by specialised corruption unit, the Hawks. Match-fixing is a crime in South Africa under the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Law.
Gulam Bodi is the only player CSA has sanctioned so far. He was banned for 20 years (five suspended) on Monday. CSA said it believed it had caught Bodi in the “planning phase” and no matches were actually fixed. It would not comment on other aspects of the ongoing investigation.
However, ESPNcricinfo has learned that two former Test cricketers and at least one other international have admitted to failing to report offers to fix matches in the ongoing South African investigation. They are expected to learn their fate in the next week. One of those players told ESPNcricinfo he believed that by refusing the offer and co-operating with the investigation, he has cleared his name.
“I spent five to six hours with the investigator explaining what happened. I knew about what Gulam [Bodi] was doing and he made me an offer but I declined,” he said. “Now it’s about waiting for the investigation to be finalised and then to see what’s going to happen. There are about 12 or 13 other guys in the same position.”
Despite several sources, who asked to remain anonymous, suggesting stakeholders within South African cricket are unhappy with the way the investigation is being handled because they fear a cover-up, CSA president Chris Nenzani said the board have given the investigation a stamp of approval.
“The board is satisfied with the progress that has been made so far and with the lengthy ban that was imposed on Mr Bodi,” Nenzani said. “We will strongly uphold our stance of zero tolerance on any corruption matter. The internal investigation under the CSA Anti-Corruption Code continues and we are confident that our experienced investigative team will leave no stone unturned.”
At the same time, the board supported a request by CSA chief executive Haroon Lorgat to hold a comprehensive review of the Ram Slam – the tournament tainted by the scandal – with a “a view to expanding its cricket and commercial values”. The 20-over competition has tried for several years to obtain the profile of some of its counterparts such as the Big Bash or Caribbean Premier League but the timing of the tournament, which often clashes with the national team’s schedule, and the weakening rand are among the obstacles to its success.
It may face another roadblock after title sponsor Ram, a courier company, told News 24 they are awaiting the outcome of the match-fixing scandal before renewing their association with CSA. “We are hopeful that CSA is taking every measure to comprehensively investigate the allegations and enforce a ‘Zero Tolerance’ approach. However no one ever wants their brand associated with any dishonest activities and we are seriously considering the outcome of the matter before renewing our sponsorship,” Alan Da Costa said.
Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo’s South Africa correspondent
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Source: ESPN Crickinfo