Cairns to learn fate within 14 days

By Sam Peters

Police inquiries centre on 2012 defamation case which criketer won after being accused of match fixing.

Chris Cairns Photo / Dean Purcell.
Chris Cairns Photo / Dean Purcell.

Chris Cairns will be told in the next two weeks whether he will be charged by British police with perverting the course of justice as the fallout from Lou Vincent's match-fixing ban continues.

The inquiries, which brought London's Metropolitan Police to New Zealand to interview the 44-year-old, centre on a 2012 court case.

Cairns successfully claimed 90,000 ($177,300) in libel damages from former ICC chief Lalit Modi after Modi accused him of involvement in match-fixing in the now defunct Indian Cricket League.

Vincent, a former teammate of Cairns, was handed a life ban from cricket earlier this year after pleading guilty to fixing a series of matches and is understood to have passed information to the police allegedly implicating the high-profile former all-rounder.

Cairns' agent, lawyer Andrew Fitch-Holland - who gave evidence on his behalf at the 2012 trial - was arrested and bailed in March under suspicion of perverting the course of justice. The police have also taken statements from Vincent's wife, as well as another former teammate, Brendon McCullum.

Cairns is back in New Zealand.

On the two-week deadline, Cairns lawyer Aaron Lloyd told the Herald last night: "We've had no indication as to timing but that timing, in the next month, would be about right. It would be speculation, but it's pretty safe speculation as to the timing."

He said he had no indication of whether charges were likely.

Cairns' friend and former teammate Dion Nash told the Diary last month: "He's trying really hard and supporting his family the best way he can."

"He's not moping around, he's showing guts and doing hard work by cleaning bus shelters. All I can do is support him, but as a friend it is really hard to watch his name being dragged through the mud with no conclusion in sight. He's a champion guy and he will come through this stronger."

Modi's lawyer, Rajesh Vyakarnam, has made multiple trips to New Zealand in recent months. The last time, a fortnight ago, he was accompanied by an investigator.

The Herald understands Modi is preparing the ground for a civil case, regardless of whether Cairns is charged with perjury.

- NZ Herald

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