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Bookmakers now also accept bets about individual performances in team sporting events, which has prompted a phenomenon known as spot fixing – such as the 2010 Pakistani cricket players’ no-balling scandal – for the benefit of gamblers.
After investigations by the News of the World and Scotland Yard, Mazhar Majeed, Pakistan’s captain, Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir were all found guilty of conspiracy to cheat at gambling and to accept corrupt payments. As a result, all three of the players were banned by the International Cricket Council (ICC); Butt for ten years, Asif for seven years and Amir for five years.
On 3 November 2011, jail terms in the UK were handed down of 30 months for Butt, one year for Asif, six months for Amir and two years eight months for Majeed. In 2010 a former Nigerian national team and Portsmouth football player told an undercover reporter that he could arrange yellow and red cards in exchange for cash and that he had received £70,000 in exchange for getting himself booked and sent off. In the Marvyn Westfield case, an Essex cricketer participated in match fixing by conceding a minimum number of runs in an over for the payment of £6,000. He was subsequently imprisoned for four months.
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