Bookie on the run arrested at Hyderabad airport

Foiled bid: Yahya's arrest may lead to another IPL team involved in the racket: Police

Bookie on the run arrested at Hyderabad airport

The Delhi Police on Friday arrested a 45-year-old bookie from Hyderabad’s Rajiv Gandhi International Airport. The bookie was trying to escape to Dubai.

Mohammad Yahya alias Yousuf, who hails from Hyderabad and resides in Mumbai, worked in Hindi movies as a spot boy from 1984 to 2010.

S N Srivastava, special commissioner of police (special cell), said Yahya was fleeing to Dubai to evade the police.

“He was in touch with several players of IPL teams, including Rajasthan Royals, and used to spot-fix matches with arrested bookie Chandresh Patel in this season,” Srivastava added.

Yahya’s role in the scandal came to light during Chandresh’s interrogation. “We did not have much details, and were looking for a person named Yousuf,” Srivastava said.

The police received a tip-off that he would try to flee to Dubai from Hyderabad, as he was a frequent traveller. An officer from the special cell of the Delhi Police was posted at the airport and was ordered to keep a check on people travelling to Dubai.

“It was difficult to spot Yahya. He had checked-in and got immigration clearance. We scanned through the data and later found him in the lounge area. There were just a few minutes before the plane was scheduled to fly,” Srivastava said.

Sources also said that Yahya had “several known people” in Dubai, but links to the underworld was not confirmed. The police believe that Yahya’s arrest may lead them to the “doors of another IPL team” involved in the racket.

Delhi Police Commissioner Neeraj Kumar said on Thursday that at least three more players and one more IPL team was under the scanner. The police have arrested three IPL players, four former players and 13 bookies since May 16.

Meanwhile, the police have recovered another mobile phone gifted by Rajasthan Royals cricketer Sreesanth to a second woman friend in Jaipur. “We have recovered a Blackberry Bold from his woman friend,” Srivastava said.

Sreesanth had purchased the mobile phone in Jaipur. He was earlier taken to Jaipur, where a Blackberry Z10 model costing around Rs 42,000 gifted to his girlfriend Sakshi Jhala, an air hostess with Air India, was recovered.

Srivastava said they were aware about the mobile phone when they went to Jaipur with Sreesanth. “He had taken us to the second girl’s house also, but the mobile could not be recovered as she was not at home,” he said.

The second woman friend is said to be Sakshi Jhala’s close friend. The trio had dinner together during which Sreesanth gifted the cellphones.

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