A shocking story from The Pool:
What would a cricketer use to beat his wife?
The answer is as obvious as it is devastating. Mustafa Bashir, 34, who plays for a local cricket league in Oldham, Greater Manchester, used his bat as part of vicious attacks against his wife, 33-year-old Fakhara Karim, in which he also poured bleach down her throat, grabbed her neck to the point she thought she would die, tried to break her fingers and slapped her so hard she fell unconscious. He threatened to kill himself before telling her that he wanted her to kill herself and suggesting that the full force of his bat could do exactly that.
Yet, despite his actions, Manchester Crown Court today has ruled that Bashir will not face jail because the judge has deemed the victim not to be “a vulnerable person”.
Passing an 18-month jail term suspended for two years, the judge has ordered Bashir to attend a “building better relationships" workshop, pay £1,000 in costs and banned him from contacting his wife.Why wasn't he sent to prison?
According to the Daily Mail:
In mitigation Bashir's lawyer Hugh McKee said: 'He has continued to play professionally in a local cricket league but of some importance certainly to him is if he is allowed to keep his liberty he will be employed by Leicestershire as a professional. He was about to sign the contract when he was arrested.' ...
'This was a relationship he wanted to keep alive but whatever she did or whatever he thought she was doing let him to lose his temper and to behave in the way described. He has continued to work, and he has a second job and potentially a very good job doing what he has always done - ie playing cricket.'And Judge Mansell QC was impressed by this plea:
'With regard to the mitigating factors I am not convinced of your remorse for her, but you are sorry for the position you find yourself in over the last two years. Your current partner is supporting you in court and she complains of no violence. You have employment prospects of being employed in cricket for Leicestershire Cricket Club.'He went on to say that "It is a very fine line between imprisonment and a suspended sentence."
Presumably, the prospect of Bashir turning out at Grace Road helped the judge come down on the cushier side of that line.
But Leicestershire County Cricket Club has issued this statement:
Leicestershire County Cricket Club are aware of stories that have been published this morning regarding Mustafa Bashir.
The club are bemused by these stories. Any references to Mustafa Bashir signing or being approached to sign for Leicestershire County Cricket Club are completely false. The club have never spoken to Mustafa Bashir or an agent, nor offered a contract to the player.All very odd.
But then Judge Mansell QC has Leicester-related previous in such cases.
Over to the Manchester Evening News from May of last year:
Leicester City player Danny Simpson WILL be able to celebrate with team-mates in Thailand AND attend the title winners party after a judge lifted a court curfew which would have kept him home-bound in Salford.
Judge Richard Mansell QC, sitting at Manchester Crown Court , said it would ‘damage team spirit’ if Simpson were unable to join fellow players on the Thailand trip.
Simpson, 29, of Swinton , first ended up in the dock after a police officer walked into his home and caught him ‘strangling’ Stephanie Ward - the estranged mother of his child - after they argued in the early hours of December 29, 2014 and she called 999.So, if you find yourself up in front of Judge Richard Mansell QC on a domestic violence charge, my advice is to tell him you are about to make your debut for Leicester Tigers.