Spot-fixing probe widens, Delhi top cop says 3 more players are under scanner

PoliceCommissioner of Delhi Police, Neeraj Kumar.

The widening police investigation into spot-fixing in the IPL is likely to net more cricketers. At least three players — all of them Indians — from a franchise other than the Rajasthan Royals are under scrutiny, the commissioner of Delhi Police, Neeraj Kumar, told The Indian Express.

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The investigation is also closing in on a new set of bookies — different from the dozen-odd men who have already been arrested — the commissioner said.

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"The contours of our probe are likely to widen soon and we are hoping to crack a fresh syndicate of bookies. We are looking at other teams and other players as well, and specifically at three Indian players from one team," Kumar said on Wednesday.

Kumar, who had in his press conference last week said police had no evidence to suggest that players other than S Sreesanth, Ajit Chandila and Ankeet Chavan might be involved, declined to name the new suspects or the places that investigators were currently watching.

Officers close to the investigation said evidence unearthed so far, including information obtained from computers and phones seized from the arrested suspects, indicated a massive betting network spread over several countries, with bets being placed online, and large volumes of money moving by hawala.

A special Delhi Police unit was working to track the trail of the money, which was eventually headed to tax havens, the officers said. Mumbai Police on Tuesday arrested alleged hawala operator Alpesh Patel, and were in touch with their counterparts in Delhi to uncover the larger network.

Delhi Police has, meanwhile, asked BCCI to help with a "cricket forensics expert", an expert who would be able to provide a detailed, ball-by-ball analysis of the allegedly fixed overs bowled by the three Rajasthan Royals players.

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