UK

Mustafa Bashir, Who Was Spared Jail Over Leicestershire Cricket Contract Claim, Faces Sentence Review

Leicestershire County Cricket Club denied there was any such offer.

05/04/2017 15:36 BST

A man spared jail for beating his wife with a cricket bat after telling a court he would lose an offer to play professional cricket is to have his sentence reviewed.

Mustafa Bashir’s suspended sentence last week for assaulting Fakhara Karim outraged campaigners who work with domestic abuse victims.

The 34-year-old was given an 18-month sentence, suspended for two years, after admitting assault occasioning actual bodily harm, assault by beating, destroying or damaging property and using a destructive substance with intent to maim.

Judge Richard Mansell QC was heavily criticised after he reportedly said Karim was not vulnerable because she was a graduate who had a lot of friends.

The judge was told that if Bashir was spared custody he would be employed as a professional player by Leicestershire County Cricket Club.

But the club later said this claim was “wholly false”.

Now Judge Mansell has ordered Bashir’s sentence to be reviewed at Manchester Crown Court on Friday.

Bashir was said to have beaten his wife with a cricket bat and forced her to drink bleach.

He was ordered to attend a Building Better Relationships Programme and a restraining order was imposed indefinitely.

But he was spared jail after his lawyers claimed in mitigation that he would lose the offer of a professional contract to play cricket with Leicestershire.

The club later contacted the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) to deny any such offer.

PA Wire/PA Images
Mustafa Bashir was spared jailed for beating his wife with a cricket bat after telling a court he would lose an offer to play professional cricket (stock image)

Leicestershire CCC chief executive Wasim Khan said: “Leicestershire CCC are appalled that Bashir could have invented a job offer from the club in order, it would seem, to evade a prison sentence.

“The club are actively involved in the fight against domestic abuse and had already arranged a Bowling Out Domestic Violence cricket match in September in support of the White Ribbon Campaign, set up to tackle domestic violence.

“So Bashir’s claim was deeply disturbing for the club and we will continue to do what we can to support the authorities bring about justice.”

The CPS then said it was aware of “recent developments” and was considering options.

Labour MP Jess Phillips was among those outraged by the judge’s remarks, branding them “dangerous” and “distressing”.

“There is no category that domestic violence does not touch, it does not follow class lines it does not follow race lines, it does not follow age lines,” Phillips told BBC 4’s Today programme.