The Westminster Magistrates Court in the United Kingdom on Monday allowed the extradition of bookie Sanjeev Chawla to India. Chawla is an accused in the match-fixing scandal involving former South African cricket captain Hansie Cronje, which broke out in 2000. He allegedly tried to influence the outcome of matches by bribing members of the South African team.
The court told UK Home Secretary Sajid Javid that Chawla’s extradition is not barred in any way, the Hindustan Times reported. Judge Rebecca Crane had blocked Chawla’s extradition in October 2017 based on the accused’s concerns about conditions in New Delhi’s Tihar Jail. However, The UK High Court ruled in November 2018 that conditions in the prison did not pose any “real risk” to Chawla’s human rights, paving the way for the Westminster Magistrates Court to reverse its ruling.
“There is nothing for me to decide,” Crane said on Monday. “The case can now be sent to the home secretary.” She said that Chawla will remain out of prison on bail, and will be arrested if he violates his bail conditions.
In October 2017, the judge had ruled that she was “otherwise satisfied” that the Delhi Police have a case against the bookie. She had dismissed his objections to extradition on the grounds of “passage of time” and “right to family life”.
Javid has two months to decide upon Chawla’s extradition, the Hindustan Times reported. The bookie can apply for leave to appeal in the High Court within 14 days of Javid’s decision.