London - A British jury on Monday cleared former New Zealand cricket captain
Chris Cairns of perjury charges over match-fixing in Test cricket.
a nine-week trial the jury of seven women and five men at Southwark
Crown Court in London found Cairns, 45, not guilty of perjury and
perverting the course of justice.
Charges were brought against
Cairns after he sued Indian Premier League chairman Lalit Modi for libel
in 2012 over a 2010 tweet in which the administrator accused him of
The allegations against Cairns resurfaced in
December 2013 when the International Cricket Council confirmed it was
investigating match-fixing claims involving three former New Zealand
Cairns, 45, won 90,000 ($135,000, 128,000 euros)
from the libel case, but he was alleged to have lied to the court when
he said he had "never, ever cheated at cricket".
all-rounder was said to have perverted the course of justice by trying
to convince fellow cricketer Lou Vincent to provide a false witness
Cairns' friend and "legal adviser", barrister Andrew Fitch-Holland, was also cleared of perverting the course of justice.
10 hours of deliberations the jury was directed to acquit the lawyer by
Mr Justice Sweeney in light of the cricketer's acquittal.
pair stood to hear the verdicts with their arms crossed behind their
backs, breathing audible sighs of relief as they heard they were
Cairns beamed and slapped his barrister friend on the
back as they left the glass-panelled dock before joining his legal team
at the back of the court.
The jury heard evidence from a host of former cricketers including Brendon McCullum and former Australia captain Ricky Ponting.
Current New Zealand skipper McCullum said Cairns approached him with a "business proposition" about match fixing.
But Cairns repeatedly denied he was ever involved in match-fixing as he defended himself during the trial.
said he reacted with "horror" and "anger" when Modi accused him of
match-fixing and he was "shocked" that McCullum could accuse him of
trying to recruit him to fix results.
He told the court he
discussed the topic of "spot-fixing" with McCullum in April 2008 in
Calcutta and explained spread-betting to him because match-fixing was
"topical" in India at the time.
Cairns said there was "minimal"
time spent discussing match-fixing, and said it was "completely wrong"
to suggest spread-betting was the equivalent to match fixing.