Whitehawk players discussed match fixing at training, court told

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A former footballer on trial for match fixing approached a teammate at training and asked if he would consider getting involved in arranging results, a court heard.

Michael Boateng spoke to fellow Whitehawk FC player Thomas Cadmore about fixing and the money involved, a jury was told.

Boateng, 22, is on trial at Birmingham Crown Court alongside fellow former Whitehawk players Hakeem Adelakun, 23, and Moses Swaibu, 25.

The trail, which is now in its second week, heard from Mr Cadmore who was giving evidence from the witness stand.

He told how Boateng had approached him during training about match-fixing.

He said: "It was a general chat about match fixing. He just asked if I would ever do it.

Responding to a question about the nature of the conversation he said: "Just talking about, if you would do it and I asked 'how' and 'how much'.

"Money was mentioned, I think a couple of grand, but I don't remember who said that - me or him."

He added that it was "just a general chat” and "wasn't a formal offer”.

Boateng's defence counsel, Denis Barry, put it to Mr Cadmore that the chat was “a bit of banter”. The footballer replied: "Yes, I didn't perceive it any other way."

He told the court he would have gone straight to the manager if had he suspected any different.

The jury also heard former Whitehawk player Swaibu was found with £3,000 cash when he was arrested by police in connection with match fixing last November.

Also speaking from the witness stand, former Whitehawk commercial director Kevin Keehan, told how Swaibu was only paid his £350 a week when he played or came on as a substitute.

After being arrested with the cash, Mr Swaibu said: “there's an innocent explanation for it though, officer,” the court heard.

Last week the jury heard Far Eastern businessmen Chann Sankaran and Krishna Ganeshan had been the “central figures” in the alleged match fixing group and the three Whitehawk players their “willing recruits”.

They are accused of attempting to fix a Whitehawk match as well as a League Two game.

Undercover National Crime Agency officers posed as finances and seized £50,000 in cash and betting receipts when the five were arrested on November 26 and 27.

Sankaran, of Hawthorn Road, Hastings, and Ganeshan, of Hougang Avenue, Singapore, deny conspiracy to commit bribery and three further counts of bribery by offering the players cash.

Boateng, of Davidson Road, Croydon, Adelakun, of Mayfield Crescent, Thornton Heath and Swaibu, of Tooley Street, London, all deny bribery.

The trial continues.

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