Pakistani umpire Asad Rauf could be named as a wanted accused in the Mumbai Crime Branch’s charge-sheet of the Indian Premier League (IPL) betting scam, sources said on Monday.
A senior Crime Branch officer said deliberations about Rauf’s status were under way and the chargesheet is expected to be filed by the end of the week. “We will reach a decision on the matter soon,” said the officer.
The Crime Branch first started suspecting Rauf’s involvement in the case while they were analysing call data records and intercepts of Virendra Randhawa alias Vindoo Dara Singh and brothers Pawan and Sanjay Chhabra as well as Pawan and Sanjay Jaipur. Rauf’s interrogation was difficult as he had reached Pakistan by the time the police started cracking down on the scam.
Rauf allegedly passed on details about IPL matches to Vindoo, who then passed them on to punters. The Jaipur brothers had also sent several expensive gifts to Rauf through bookie Prem Taneja, an arrested accused in the case, half of which were sent by air, while the other half was seized by police at Mumbai International Airport. The gifts include T-shirts with insignia of IPL teams as well as expensive watches. The Jaipur brothers had told police the gifts were sent as they had ‘friendly relations’ with Rauf.
The Bombay High Court on Friday had denied the anticipatory bail plea filed by the Jaipur brothers.