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IPL spot-fixing: Court to hear arguments on charges from Dec 8

New Delhi: A Delhi court today fixed December 8 for commencement of arguments on framing of charges in 2013 IPL spot-fixing scandal case in which suspended cricketers S Sreesanth, Ajit Chandila, Ankeet Chavan and others, including underworld don Dawood Ibrahim, have been chargesheeted.

Additional Sessions Judge Neena Bansal Krishna listed the matter for December 8 after Special Cell of Delhi Police told the court that it would start arguments on framing of charges in the case.

Ajit Chandila, Sreesanth, Ankeet Chavan
Ajit Chandila, Sreesanth, Ankeet Chavan

During the hearing, the advocates representing the accused submitted that the arguments should be heard in batches as there were several accused in the case. "Accused having identical roles should argue together in batches otherwise it would be a never ending process," one of the defence counsel said.

The police, meanwhile, gave names of accused in six groups to the court, saying as per the charge sheet, the persons named in one group have similar roles in the entire conspiracy. The first group contains names of Dawood Ibrahim, his aide Chhota Shakeel, who were declared as proclaimed offenders by the court earlier, and others.

Sreesanth, Chandila and Chavan have figured in the third group having 13 names. The accused would advance their arguments on framing of charges in the case from January 7, next year. The court had earlier declared Dawood, Shakeel and Chandigarh-based Sandeep Sharma, who were chargesheeted by the police, as proclaimed offenders as they are evading arrest in the matter.

The police had told the court that properties of Dawood and Shakeel in Mumbai have already been attached in connection with the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case and upon inquiry, it was revealed that they have not visited India since 1993.

It had submitted that Dawood had properties in his name at Dongri in Mumbai whereas Shakeel owned property in Nagpada there.

The court had earlier issued non-bailable warrants (NBWs) against Dawood and Shakeel, Pakistan-based Javed Chutani, Salman alias Master and Ehteysham, who all are considered to be Dawood's associates. The police had filed a 6,000 -page charge sheet against the accused in the case. It had also filed supplementary charge sheet in the court later on.

The court had on June 10, last year granted bail to Sreesanth, Chavan and 19 others for lack of evidence against them under the provisions of stringent Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA). Other accused, including Chandila, were also granted bail later on by the court.

The police, in its charge sheet, had claimed that Dawood and Shakeel, who have been "controlling the fixing and betting market" in cricket in India, were behind IPL spot-fixing.

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